Is BYOD the Best or Worst Thing That’s Happened to the Channel Market

“Turning a blind eye” is an age old idiom that describes the act of ignoring undesirable information. And, according to our 2013 Data Protection Trends Research, it seems to be the attitude many IT professionals have taken towards the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) movement.

Despite the continued onslaught of personal devices in the workplace, nearly 60 percent of companies don’t have a BYOD policy in place and 80 percent of organizations have not educated employees on BYOD! While the immediate data protection issues this kind of willful ignorance creates is obvious, the ripple effect it has on the channel market is often less talked about, but worth addressing.

For channel-focused companies looking to offer additional value to partners, incorporating mobility solutions seems both logical and profitable, especially in light of BYOD movements. But, is corporate BYOD ignorance a deterrent or confirmation of this strategy?

In light of the findings from our 2013 Data Protection Trends Research, some may think that if businesses aren’t placing emphasis on BYOD, then perhaps channel mobility efforts would fall on deaf ears. BUT, as businesses recognize the growing security risks of unprotected and unsanctioned BYOD activity, then BYOD and mobility solutions will be a welcome addition to channel models.

Even though 30 percent of the companies surveyed are still in denial about BYOD, forbidding personal devices to access the company network, employees recognize the productivity gains of BYOD and will find workarounds, potentially using insecure cloud apps like DropBox to share corporate files between devices. This, combined with the fact that, of the 4,300+ IT professionals surveyed worldwide, only 31 percent mandate a device password, means that sensitive data is all the more at risk for theft, corruption and hacking.

Hopefully, IT professionals will slowly but surely open their eyes and face the fact that BYOD isn’t just a ‘trend.’ And, by implementing solutions through the channel that not only protect company data, but grant workers the productivity and convenience they have come to expect, IT need not fear!