Norfolk County Council to implement BYOD strategy this year

By Sooraj Shah
26 Apr 2012 View Comments
Tablet user

Norfolk County Council (NCC) is to roll out a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) scheme this year, following a successful trial with Android devices in Norfolk schools.

At a BT Assure roundtable held at Infosecurity Europe in London today, Kurt Frary, ICT architecture manager at NCC, said that the authority wants to enable BYOD in both schools and council offices as part of a new ICT strategy.

Further reading

"We will proactively exploit and support the use of social media, mobile technology and other emerging innovations for the benefit of the council and its customers," its ICT strategy document reads.

Frary said that it was imperative that both the schools and the council itself had the same scheme implemented as currently they are both at different stages of adoption.

"On the corporate side we are holding back as there are more issues with security. On the school side we are being dragged along by tablets and other devices that the schools are using to help teach the children; we need to join these two together," he said.

A recent BT Assure survey of workers at large enterprises found that nearly a third of respondents saw "no risk" in using their own device in a work context.

But BT Global Service's head of security, Jeff Schmidt, described such an attitude as "dangerous" and said that all organisations should think carefully about BYOD risks.

Carl Blackett, NCC's ICT security architect, agreed, saying that an organisation's response should not be as simple as a "yes" or "no".

"It's about a risk-based approach. If it is a risk within an organisation then the organisation should go forward with the plans and say ‘yes, but'," he argued.

Frary added that the level of risk is dependent on the type of organisation.

"An organisation has to ask, is the information [being sent to mobile devices] that important? If it is then make sure it is secure but if not then it could just be used without any risk," he said.

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