It’s no surprise that remote working skyrocketed in 2020, with more than 40% of Americans continuing to do their jobs outside of traditional office environments.1 However, what may be more shocking is that nearly a quarter of the workforce is expected to be “permanently remote” by 2025.2

In other words, the mobile workforce is here to stay—but with this new era of flexibility, productivity, and convenience also come growing concerns over how to keep both enterprise and personal data secure.

Keeping network access and sensitive data flowing to the right hands—and out of the wrong ones—is an increasingly complex endeavor. Fortunately, there are solutions that can quickly improve an organization’s security stance.

Consider, for example, the added degree of difficulty managing an asset that’s in constant motion, or how issues like worker distraction and always being “on the go” can lead to compromised devices and being more vulnerable to email phishing attacks or clicking on a bad website link. According to one study, enterprise mobile phishing activity rose 37% in the first quarter of 2020 alone—well before much of the workforce transitioned to work from home or work from anywhere environments.3 And with workers now routinely having access to corporate data from smartphones, the stakes are even higher.

Common 5G Security Concerns.

The implications of managing a mobile workforce and its devices are hardly minimal or limited to lost hours of productivity. A data breach can cause significant recovery costs in money and time and a negative impact on corporate reputation, profit, operations, and even partners in the supply chain. Following are four key challenges many business managers face in our new world of work:

  • Greater Management Complexity – there are now more new and replacement devices to track, all of which need the most current apps and access without accidentally exposing sensitive or private information
  • Lack of Control – without an MDM (Mobile Device Management) solution, business managers can’t see—much less control—what’s happening at a field level
  • Lost or Stolen Devices – bad actors can steal business data from devices without adequate lock-down mechanisms; data in the wrong hands can open the door to a company’s network
  • External Attacks – mobile workers can sometimes become more distracted when working remotely, which opens the possibility of clicking on suspect links or inadvertently downloading malware. As with lost or stolen devices, data and network access can end up in the wrong hands

Best Security Practices for Workforce Mobility.

Keeping network access and sensitive data flowing to the right hands—and out of the wrong ones—is an increasingly complex endeavor. Fortunately, there are solutions that can quickly improve an organization’s security stance, organized in three key categories: devices, network, and people.

Devices. Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions, executed via a central cloud-based console, help address device security. They typically offer two key features:

  • Security – Mobile Device Management solutions can help organizations control device access, set usage and password policies, remotely lock/wipe a lost or stolen phone, and hinder access to hackers or malware attacks.
  • Management – MDM solutions deliver a single platform where all mobile devices in use can be monitored and managed and can authorize users with some form of identity management. MDM also offers the ability to perform remote troubleshooting and device repair, set compliance policies, and increase device visibility.

Network and People. The FTC maintains a running list of helpful tips and advice for those looking to make their mobile futures as secure as possible, including:

  • Network segmentation
  • Requiring secure passwords and authentication
  • Restricting employees’ access to sensitive data

By empowering clients with 5G networks, T-Mobile provides improved integrity protection, more robust authorization and authentication of mobile devices, and increased identity protection.

The Benefits of 5G Security Advantage.

The benefits of 5G-enabled security are numerous, including anti-tracking and spoofing features that prevent manipulation of individual device connections.

5G also introduces new IP and cloud security standards that help strengthen networks’ security posture. And 5G allows managers to perform “network slicing,” or segmenting multiple virtual networks so that they can be managed and customized independently if desired. Different “slices,” for example, could each have tailored protections for specific device types.

All of this adds up to more robust security across countless solutions, industries and use cases. By empowering clients with 5G networks, T-Mobile provides improved integrity protection, more robust authorization and authentication of mobile devices, and increased identity protection.

Learn more about TFB’s commitment to security: Network Security Solutions | T-Mobile for Business (t-mobile.com)

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