Things to Know Before You BYOD

By: David Wilshire, Principal Consultant

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is a rising topic in the mobility space, and for good reason. Allowing employees to use their personal mobile devices on the job lets them work with their preferred technology and streamlines company communications.

bring your own device (BYOD) blocksBut before your organization jumps in, there’s a number of things to consider. One of these is a mobile device terms of service (ToS).

A ToS is a legally binding agreement that defines the rights and responsibilities of both the company and the device user. For companies adopting a BYOD policy, a ToS is crucial for:

  • Explaining company policies regarding misuse of company resources and data
  • Explaining actions that your company can take on the device if users violate those policies (typically, up to and including a full device wipe)
  • Listing which kinds of personal data on the device are and are not collected/reported

The standard operating procedure goes like this: before their device receives access to corporate email, data, and resources, the user reads, understands, and signs the ToS. The company keeps a record of the ToS in the event of future legal dispute. And, if the ToS is updated, users sign the revised ToS.

For a smooth transition, the ToS should be understandable to users outside of the legal profession and written in their native language(s). We also recommend to partner with your company’s legal department to craft the ToS before starting the program, to provide some protection for your company in the event that a compliance violation triggers a wipe of the user’s personal pictures and content.

BYOD is a great way to boost productivity and save money on internal infrastructure. A strong, enforced ToS will go a long way toward making sure your organization communicates with optimal speed and efficiency.

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