by clicking on the page. A slider will appear, allowing you to adjust your zoom level. Return to the original size by clicking on the page again.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider on the top right.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field and click on "In This Issue" or "All Issues" to search the current issue or the archive of back issues respectively.
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
this publication and page.
displays a table of sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays thumbnails of every page in the issue. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse through every available issue.
GCN : September 2015
A RISING CONCERN for government organizations is the so-called shadow IT ecosystem — the unau- thorized applications that employees download and use at work without formal agency permission. That poses serious secu- rity headaches for network administrators, who don’t know which applications are out there and who has them and therefore find it impossible to write effec- tive security policies. It’s similarly difficult to opti- mize network parameters when traffic is produced by unknown sources. The bring-your-own- device movement has generated its own security headaches over the past few years, and agencies have struggled to come up with ways to let employees use their personal mobile devices for government work. A few agencies have done that, but most have simply barred employees from using personal phones and tablets to handle gov- ernment data. Case closed? If only. Were there really that many IT executives who thought that, simply be- cause they said so, people used to peering at their screens every few minutes outside work would meekly give that up at the office and switch to agency- sanctioned devices? Hillary Clinton is not the only one who doesn’t want to swap phones to get email or other communications. Mobile security com- pany Lookout wanted to see what the reality of this “shadow BYOD” is, and it’s not pretty. An analysis of records for Lookout- enabled devices found 14,622 associated with gov- ernment networks. More than one in 10 of those de- vices registered a “serious mobile threat encounter” in the course of a year. In a recent survey of more than 1,000 govern- ment employees at 20 agencies, Lookout discov- ered that half of them have used their personal devices to get email, and nearly as many have used them to download work documents. And the threat from mo- bile devices is not only real, it seems to be higher than that found outside govern- ment. In the Lookout sur- vey, 18 percent of federal employees claimed to have encountered malware on their personal and govern- ment-issued mobile devices. That’s more than double the average percentage reported overall for iPhone and Android devices. All this comes on the heels of a number of recent announcements of dan- gerous bugs found in the Android operating system. One was the so-called Stagefright vulnerability, which could affect up to 95 percent of Android devices. Some experts have likened it to the OpenSSL Heart- bleed bug of 2014. Now another bug has been found in an Android system-level app called Google Admin. The bug allows Android to accept URLs from other apps, which could be manipu- lated to give malware ac- cess to private data on the device. The bad news for An- droid continues to pile on, with vulnerabilities also found in various browsers used with the operating system. But don’t make the mis- take of thinking Apple’s iOS is immune to cyberthreats. The trick, of course, is making sure users install all the patches that come out for Android and iOS to fix those vulnerabilities — and do so in a timely manner. Perfect patching doesn’t happen, so at any given time there will be vulner- able devices accessing gov- ernment systems and data. Then there’s just the dumb stuff that no one can govern. The Lookout survey found that 58 percent of respondents were aware of the potential consequences of using their personal devices at work, but 85 percent admitted to using them for risky activities anyway. It’s back-to-school time for most of America. Maybe it’s also time for the federal government to get back to basics with cybersecurity and put together formal policies to handle BYOD. The practice is only going to get more prevalent over time — and so will the potential risks. • Dumb and dumber: Shadow BYOD at government agencies BY BRIAN ROBINSON CYBEREYE The threat from mobile devices is not only real, it seems to be higher than that found outside government. 12 GCN SEPTEMBER 2015 • GCN.COM 0915gcn_012.indd 12 9/2/15 9:08 AM