- The Washington Times - Monday, October 21, 2013

An “alarming” number of younger white-collar employees worldwide would break company security rules forbidding them from using their own mobile phones or other personal communications devices for work-related tasks, according to a survey published Monday.

Experts say the new poll by the computer security company Fortinet shows the importance of companies getting employee input when developing rules for the use of personal telecommunications devices.

Some companies have resisted introducing so-called “bring your own device” (BYOD) policies — in which employees use their own mobile technology — because of concerns about the security of their computer networks and the data stored on them.

Fortinet, which surveyed 3,200 employees between the ages of 21 to 32 from 20 countries this month, found 51 percent said they would ignore any policy in place banning the use of personal devices at work or for work purposes. The result represents a 41 percent increase over a survey in 2012.

John Maddison, vice president of marketing for Fortinet, said this “alarming propensity” to ignore the rules also was shown in other areas of personal information technology usage.

The survey found that 89 percent of respondents had their own personal cloud storage accounts, such as DropBox, with 70 percent using the accounts for work. Thirty-six percent said they would break any rules made to stop them doing so. Forty-eight percent would also ignore company policies to curb the use of other emerging mobile technology, such as Google Glass and wearable devices such as smart watches.

“This year’s research reveals the issues faced by organizations when attempting to enforce policies around BYOD, cloud application usage and soon the adoption of new connected technologies,” Mr. Maddison said.