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5 Safety Concerns of Using SharePoint on Mobile Devices

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The growing popularity of smartphones and tablets has encouraged many companies to upgrade their existing software by including specialized features and functionality to target the new users. Microsoft has upgraded SharePoint with loads of features to target some of the most popular mobile operating systems including Windows, iOS and Android. The mobile capabilities have made it easier for many application developers and resellers to optimize their users’ mobile experience without putting any extra time.


At the same time, these features have enabled users to access a variety of content on their mobile devices anytime and anywhere. Most companies, nowadays, allow their staff to access corporate resources through their mobile devices to reduce project cost. With more and more users accessing SharePoint 2013 on their handheld devices, it has become essential for companies to keep the mobile experience of their employees and customers safe and secure.


So the IT department often finds it a daunting challenge to completely control the way the corporate resources are being accessed by various stakeholders. Many companies even look for the best techniques to prepare a comprehensive SharePoint mobile security plan. However, you can always concentrate on some common mobile security measures to ensure that your employees and clients will access SharePoint content without compromising the security of sensitive corporate content. This can help you unleash the powers of custom sharepoint development while keeping security strengthened.


5 Common Security Guidelines for Using SharePoint on Mobile Devices


Securing Content when the Mobile Device is Lost or Stolen: In comparison to computers, the chances of a mobile device being lost or stolen are much higher. So you must make a policy to protect the sensitive documents and data of your company, in case a user’s mobile device is lost or stolen. If a person is allowed of access corporate resources on his smartphone or tablet, he must be asked to protect his mobile devices through a lock or pin. Also, you must explore options to remotely wipe out the documents and data stored on the mobile device. As the security features vary from one mobile device to another, you must implement policies by targeting the major mobile operating systems.


Protecting Users’ Login Credentials: Most mobile devices allow users to store their username, password, and similar credentials. Some devices even use cookies to store the login credential of users. So you must train your staff about the most effective way to protect their credentials. After completing a task, the user must sign out of the corporate website. Similarly, they must disable all options that allow them to remember their passwords or keep them signed in. It is also important to delete cookies on their mobile browser on a daily basis. These measures will make it difficult for unauthorized users to access the corporate resources in case the mobile device is lost or stolen.


Protecting Communication between Server and Mobile Device: Most users access the data and documents of their organization through their mobile web browsers. So you must implement a strategy to secure the communication between your SharePoint Server 2013 and mobile web browsers. You can always keep the communication secure by enabling SSL. You can even consider using Forefront Unified Access Gateway (UAG) or any other reverse proxy server to keep the communication secure. By securing the communication, you can further minimize the chances of your corporate resources being hacked.


Activate Exchange ActiveSync Protocol: As a communication protocol, Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync is effective in optimizing the device-side security. The protocol is presently available for Windows phones and other third-party mobile devices. You can further administer the device security by administering a comprehensive policy. Normally, the mobile devices of users access the SharePoint Server 2013 through a public-facing URL. So the SharePoint data and documents will remain inaccessible in case a mobile device is lost or stolen. Also, you can use the protocol to remotely wipe a variety of data from the mobile device. The protocol also enables you to prevent unauthorized access by displaying a lock screen that will force the users to enter a complex password.


Impose Multiple Authentications: Microsoft has further updated SharePoint 2013 with multiple authentication modes and methods. However, all authentication methods and modes may not be supported by each mobile device. So you have to make a comprehensive list of mobile devices that your employees use for accessing the corporate resources. Based on the supported mobile devices, you have to understand and implement the relevant authentication modes. Also, you have to decide the files, documents and resources that you will allow your staff to access on mobile devices. If you have made SharePoint sites, it will be easier to decide the mobile devices that can be used to access the resources externally. The external access restrictions will also have a impact on the authentication methods selected by you.


It is also important to review the guidelines for using SharePoint on mobile devices to make the security arrangements stronger and more effective. At the same time, you should also explore the latest security measures recommended by Microsoft to keep your corporate resources secure and inaccessible.


We provide Sharepoint development services. If you would like to know what makes us expert SharePoint developers, please contact us at Mindfire Solutions.

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