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BYOD: What can we learn from China?

Tom Kaneshige | Aug. 23, 2012
U.S. employees may never be as accepting as the Chinese about BYOD's potential privacy violations, but American companies can still learn a lot about effective BYOD from China, namely, better educating workers about security.

Netswitch CEO Stanley Li

And who reads those boring policies anyway? Many employees will sign the newly crafted BYOD policy without giving it much thought, which is a shame because they could be signing away their privacy rights. (For more on this topic, check out BYOD: Time to Adjust Your Privacy Expectations.)

Along these lines, Chinese employees have become familiar-maybe even resigned-to the negative consequences of BYOD smartphones, Li says. They already know that carriers, device manufactures and employers may be tracking their location. The company might even know what they're doing on the personal side of the BYOD smartphone. After all, what is that corporate app really doing?

That's not to say that U.S. companies should follow this lead of accepting what could be privacy invasions. Rather, U.S. employees should take their cue from Chinese employees and understand the potential tradeoff between BYOD convenience and privacy.

It's one of a few things BYOD companies and employees in the United States can learn from their Chinese counterparts. In China, BYOD smartphones are simply how things are done. In the United States, it's just beginning.



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