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The Future of Mobile Security for Small Business

The smartphone and tablet have already become common workplace furnishings, buzzing and chirping beside the computer of the average employee. As part of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy, employees bring their devices to the office and use them for work. We are already seeing a lot of BYOD.

BYOD programs are common at 70% of companies surveyed by Forrester Research’s Foresights Workforce Employee Survey. The employees in these programs use their cell phones for 62% of work tasks, their tablets for 56%, and their laptops for 39%.

It’s reasonable to expect smartphones and other mobile technology to grow in importance for workers in the future. Small businesses can benefit from employee-owned mobile devices, but they can also pose some new risks. Here’s a look at how mobile security will affect small businesses in the future.

Is Your Small Business Taking Mobile Security Seriously?

Cyberattacks do not spare small businesses. An analysis of mobile security studies by Verizon found that smaller organizations are more at risk than larger ones. Several reasons explain this, including the inability of small businesses to maintain current policies, processes, or personnel.

As a result, these businesses are the most likely to be blind spots for security breaches that could threaten their financial sustainability.

Many small business leaders are aware that the odds are stacked against them. Owners of small businesses are adopting a motto of simple and effective to make the most of mobility, implement digital transformations, and safeguard sensitive information.

Disastrous Outcomes and Hidden Threats

There are many headlines about breaches at large organizations, but many smaller businesses have been hacked, attacked, or ransomed. According to the Verizon Mobile Security Index 2019, almost a third of small businesses experienced a mobile data breach in 2018, more than double the rate of 15% from the previous year.

Increasingly, smartphones and tablets play an increasingly important role in business processes. This makes them more of a target for exploitation since we use them in places where they are vulnerable to theft, loss, or rogue Wi-Fi.

How Mobile Security will Develop in the Future?

  • Authentication with two factors will become the de facto standard

In the future, you will not be able to avoid using Two-Factor Authentication. How does Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) work? Adding two-factor authentication to your login procedure adds an extra layer of security.

When you log into an app or service (after entering the regular username/password) you retrieve a 6-digit code via an app, such as Google Authenticator. If you do not have this six-digit code, you cannot log in.

You won’t have to worry about bad actors gaining access to your accounts with this additional layer of security. Even though it isn’t perfect, it significantly reduces the number of accounts that can be hacked.

So many people refuse to use two-factor authentication (to this point). Why? Because it’s an extra step. Most don’t bother with 2FA since it’s optional.

That will change shortly. 2FA will be mandatory for all account logins in the coming years. The business should then make sure that the service is integrated into their mobile apps and the servers that support them.

  • Multi-factor authentication will be implemented for phone logins

Also, you might think that keeping your phone safe from unwanted users can be as easy as using a PIN/Password/Fingerprint/Face unlock.

Authenticating phone logins with multiple factors may be required in the future. If you want to access your device, your finger might have to be tapped to the reader instead of a face or a fingerprint.

Many of you who read that might have rolled your eyes and groaned. But think about this: Are you more concerned with security or ease of logging in? You probably answered security. Otherwise, it may not be a question of if but when someone hacks into your phone.

  • Increasing the frequency of security updates (and making them smaller)

Updates and upgrades to mobile operating systems and security are in disarray. The updates often take the form of larger upgrades, which can take time and break things. All installed apps need to be migrated from one major platform release to another when moving from one major release to another.

  • We will be updating more frequently and with smaller updates in the future

Updates in the form of security patches will be available regularly, while platform upgrades will be released twice a year or even three times a year (in the form of X.1, X.2, X.3). In addition to being more frequent, these smaller security updates will cause fewer issues for users and app developers.

  • Applications cannot be sideloaded anymore

In other words, sideloading apps is the process of installing apps from sources other than the default app store (Google Play Store or Apple App Store). The primary cause of problems arises when users install apps from third-party sites.

That option is likely to disappear within the next year or two. As a result, a platform’s app store will be the only way to install a mobile app. That means businesses must submit their apps to both app stores or they will not be available to users.

Users and businesses may disagree with this, but if mobile devices are to remain truly secure, this is a necessity. So anyone thinking of submitting to the Google Play Store or Apple App Store (who’s not already doing so) needs to brush up on the process.

  • There will be a significant increase in the vetting of applications

Furthermore, if your application is rejected the first few times, don’t be surprised that application vetting will become so rigorous. There will be an extremely tightening of security policies and both Apple and Google will reject submissions quickly.

This dilemma can be avoided by keeping track of the requirements for each platform constantly. These requirements change over time, and that’s the problem. Compared to V 1.0 of your app, don’t think V 2.0 will also be accepted just because you followed the same guidelines. If you make any changes to your app, you must ensure it meets the requirements for acceptance.

Conclusion

Small businesses must adjust their entire team to mobile security in the future. Security professionals should concentrate their efforts on wireless infrastructure, wireless services, and other mobile device security processes.

All the investment and budgeting will, of course, benefit small businesses by making them better prepared for secure mobile applications in the future.