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Law firm urges companies to be smart

1st May, 2013

Leading law firm Aaron & Partners is warning employers to ensure they have a policy in place to protect their IT and data systems as an increasing number of workers now use their smart phones and tablets for work.

Aaron & Partners LLP say that companies without an effective ‘bring your own device’ to work (BYOD) policy could be risking their IT resources, communication systems and ultimately, the good reputation of their business.

The Chester-based law firm is now providing its own BYOD policy to meet the demands of an increasing number of clients that have experienced problems caused by a rise in employees using their own devices for work.

With the soaring popularity of personal mobile devices and more and more people working flexibly and from home, Aaron & Partners warn that boundaries between home and work are becoming increasingly blurred, saying it is essential that companies have provision in place to ensure its systems are protected.

A recent survey commissioned by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) revealed that 47% of all UK adults now use their personal smart phone, laptop or tablet computer for work purposes.
The ICO has now published new guidance which explains what employers need to consider if permitting the use of personal devices to process personal data for work purposes.

Problems can include the loss or theft of employees’ smart phones or tablets that contain confidential work.

Companies can also be at risk from a disgruntled employee who could use their work email to send out malicious or damaging messages or a worker who may inadvertently introduce a virus on to their employer’s IT system.

Helen Watson, Head of Employment at Aaron & Partners, who is leading on the firm’s BYOD policy, said: “This policy is aimed at employers who wish to allow their employees to use their own smart phones, tablets or other mobile devices for work, either while at the office, remotely or during non-working hours.
“It applies to private workplaces in the UK and deals with such issues as monitoring, privacy, security and cost.
“It is really important that companies consider having a policy as this is an issue that is not going to go away.”

The policy costs £149 plus VAT and is available from Helen Watson who can be contacted on 01244 405565 or [email protected]

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