It amazes me as I sit here in the airline lounge, how many business conversations are in progress around me. People on their mobile phones discussing their latest prospect meetings, job offers and compensation plans, and even two engineers discussing required design changes to their product while looking over the diagrams at the table across from me.
All of this information could be used to leverage stock purchases or sell-offs, poaching of prospects and clients, and most notably, deficits in a competitor’s product based on the engineers’ conversations. Worst of all, I do not want to hear it, but I have no choice as each time one person’s volume increases, the others follow suit. And they want to allow mobile phone use on the plane!!!
In my view, this is a major breach of corporate security. While it is not the same as being hacked, it is still a security risk that must be addressed and managed properly. Especially the open discussion about design changes with the diagrams out in the open. Many of the lounges have private rooms and areas you can use for this type of discussion. What this shows me is that the emphasis is on being hacked from the outside, when more realistic threats live within.
All employees are responsible to maintain levels of confidentiality at all times. The fact that mobility is a reality and that we can be engaged anytime, from anywhere is no excuse for openly discussing corporate business in public areas. While you may think it is a private conversation the fact that I, and many others can hear you from 30 feet way negates the privacy perception you have. If you must talk business, do so, but ensure that you cannot be overheard and your documents cannot be seen. To the business owners and leaders, teach you r employees what real corporate security means and emphasize appropriate use of mobile devices. It could save your business.
What say you?
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Bob Larrivee, Director of Custom Research – AIIM
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I will be teaching the AIIM ECM Master in Silver Spring, MD on November 11, 2014