Are unmanaged Apple devices a “huge liability” in corporations?

While employers widely use Apple devices for work, a lack of security and management of those devices exposes companies to significant liabilities.

While employers widely use Apple devices for work, a lack of security and management of those devices exposes companies to significant liabilities.

That’s according to latest research, in which tech firm Centrify claims that of the total 2,249 US workers surveyed, nearly half (45 percent) use at least one Apple device for work purposes.

Furthermore, the majority of those Apple devices (63 percent) are owned by the user as opposed to the company and are used to access work email, corporate documents and business applications.

Results claim that at present, across organisations, 59 percent of Macs are used to access confidential company information, 65 percent of Macs are used to access sensitive or regulated customer information while 51 percent of iPhones in the workplace are used to gain access to business applications.

Also, 58 percent of iPads in the workplace are used to gain access to business applications.

However, despite the popularity of Apple devices in the workplace, businesses do not invest enough resources to secure or manage them.

“This survey spotlights the massive exposures that occur when devices do not comply with standard corporate security policies,” says Bill Man, chief product officer, Centrify.

“In particular, customer data represents a huge liability. Disclosure of regulated information such as healthcare records could expose corporations to fines and other legal action.

“Most importantly, there are solutions on the market today that can handily secure Apple devices without sacrificing user productivity. It’s time for IT to take action.”

Man reports that over half (51 percent) of all devices are secured by a password that is merely a single word or a series of numbers, while most devices (58 percent) also do not have software installed to enforce strong passwords.

More than half (56 percent) of users report sharing their passwords with others with only 17 percent of Apple devices having company-supplied password manager.

In addition, only 28 percent of Apple devices have company-provided device management solutions installed and only 35 percent of Apple devices have encryption of stored data enforced by their company.

“Ultimately there is no discernable correlation between password strength and sensitivity of information accessed or accessible from a particular device or user,” Man adds.

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