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Uflex's secure BYOD solution gives it competitive edge

Ishan Bhattacharya | Nov. 3, 2014
How Uflex's BYOD solution helped the company secure sales quotation data and enabled it to stay ahead of competition.

A multi-billion dollar company, with a workforce of over 5,000, Uflex is undoubtedly the king of the flexible packaging industry in India.

Its envious global reach and product portfolio make it a force to reckon with.

But its daunting security challenges were like a dagger hanging over the company's competitive edge. Uflex was facing problems pertaining to IT security. There was always a possibility that employees could scan photographs of confidential documents. They could carry it and even share them on social media platforms to transfer the same to the company's competitors.

"In our world, a price as low as 10 cents per kg can result in gaining an order of 1,000 tons. Hence, leakage of sales quotations can amount to huge risk. I get to know about leakages only when others suddenly start poaching on our orders," says Ravi Ramakrishnan, global IT head and CIO of Uflex.

Another security hole was the local IT administrator who provided Wi-Fi access and other such facilities to the employees. "Gradually, things went out of control. There were chances that even an IT personnel could get involved by giving access to critical applications on a friendly basis, which could turn out to be a security nightmare," says Ramakrishnan.

To fix this and gain more control over devices in the enterprise, Ramakrishnan decided to deploy BYOD. Three major reasons for the company to implement the BYOD solution were security concerns, influx of smartphones, and reaching out to employees through MDM alerts. The solution provided Uflex with a lot more control.

"I might block Skype to ensure employees use our own smartphone platform as they can be traced. In case of high security areas, we can also block cameras based on the Wi-Fi credentials. For instance, we have blocked photography and transfer of files through unauthorized platforms like Skype and Viber. If an employee is terminated or something goes wrong, we can also do a remote wipe," he says.

Another advantage was that with the solution, anyone can use the LAN to interact with employees in other countries. This minimized international call costs and established a secure VoIP network.

The deployment of the BYOD solution proved advantageous. It ensured control over data breaches, standardization of bandwidth prices, and transparency of employee locations.

"Owing to the solution the security loop hole was plugged. The fact that employees know that they are being watched has helped us achieve standardization of Wi-Fi usage. Because of the solution, today though every employee has Wi-Fi connection, the Wi-Fi cost hasn't spiraled up. Otherwise, our bandwidth prices would be three times more expensive. It would have escalated by 250 percent," Ramakrishnan says.

Uflex has showed the way for other organizations grappling with BYOD and its security challenges.

 

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