Reasonable Expectation of Privacy
On the one hand, they have changed the way people communicate with one another. Mobile technology has enabled mobile users to leverage existing Internetenabled devices to stay connected with friends, family members, and colleagues; complete daily online tasks such as those previously mentioned (e.g., online banking transactions, credit card applications, mortgage applications, and loan applications); work on the go such as responding to work-related emails and other tasking—saving time and hassle from physically going to banking institutions and offices for processing and so forth. On the other hand, such technological advances have also persuaded many corporate decision makers to implement new as well as amending existing Acceptable User Policies (AUP) to allow employees to bring personal mobile devices to the professional workplace. According to the study by Couture in 210, which claimed that the following:
Advanced mobile devices, known as smartphones, are a class of devices built at their core around ease of connectivity and always-on accessibility of online services. These devices can offer many advantages in increased productivity and ubiquitous availability of personal, client and corporate data (p. 2).
The commingling of personal mobile devices such as smartphones, PDAs, tablets, iPhones, etc., into the workplace has also spawned new security concerns for both end users and corporate management teams. “Take that computer outside of that office, and much of that protection is not available or much less effective — creating a “mobile blind spot,” when mobile control is in the hands of the employee and no longer in the hands of IT” (Skuler, 2009, para. 2). In addition, Chanliau (2014) referenced “With the advent of more powerful and functional tablets and smart phone offerings, mobile computing is fast becoming the “new normal” (p. 18). This “new normal” as Chanliau had captured contributed to a new era of technology integration practice in the workplace to increase productivity and operational efficiency.
Mobile computing gradually allows us to make the elusive “anytime, anywhere access” mantra a reality. More and more employees use their own mobile device in the workplace, a phenomenon known as “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD), resulting in employees using the same device for personal and business purposes (Chanliau, 2014, p. 1).
It is worth noting, although BYODs can improve productivity and operational efficiency, they are not without security concerns, which could cause corporations millions of legal fees and law suit costs. In 2014, Chanliau claimed:
introducing mobile devices in the enterprise presents additional security challenges. Userowned mobile devices contain personal information and have special privacy considerations. Mobile devices lack enterprise security controls but they need to blend seamlessly into the corporate computing landscape in order to preserve security without disrupting the workflow of the enterprise. (p. 1)
Couture (2010) also stated “increasing connectivity and integration into corporate networks means that a vast amount of data could be at risk by virtue of the less-secure portal into corporate systems potentially created by mobile devices” (p. 5). “All sorts of information is being kept in “plain sight” on mobile devices and could be devastating to an enterprise if it fell into the wrong hands” (Bancroft, 2008, para. 8).
According to Schneier (2015), “But encryption is the most important privacy-preserving technology we have, and one that is uniquely suited to protect against bulk surveillance – the kind done by governments looking to control their populations and criminals looking for vulnerable victims” (para. 7). The potential security gaps and privacy (i.e., Fourth Amendment) issues against unreasonable searches and seizures, could lead to challenging obstacles for corporate management teams to tackle. In this section of the paper, the author will focus on exploring the various aspects of privacy issue concerns that pertain to BYODs and/or mobile devices as opposed to the security concerns that were addressed in the “Data Encryption” section of this research paper. Additionally, the author will use the terms BYODs and mobile devices interchangeably to highlight the Fourth Amendment discussions on privacy concerns on subsequent discussions in this section of the paper. Chanliau (2014) mentioned “While encouraging BYOD model, many organizations still benefit from issuing corporate owned devices for their employees, enabling personal or corporate only use” (p. 1).