You're a board member of a Fortune 500 company, and it's June of 2007. After a weekend marveling at your latest gadget, you bring your shiny new first-generation smartphone into the office and tell IT “I need my e-mail on this.” With that, you kick off one of the biggest paradigm shifts of the information age: The “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) revolution. Over the course of the last several years, the trend that started out on the iPads of the C-suite has found its way to the pockets of employees at every level. While BYOD has been maligned for its supposed risk, it's hard to deny the appeal of having a more connected workforce.
BYOD is any policy that allows workers to supply a platform that they connect to work through. While most typically associated with tablets and smartphones, the concept extends to PCs and laptops as well. The former has been available via remote access and VPN client for the better part of two decades. However, when talking in the context of today's office, BYOD most commonly refers to the use of mobile devices.