BYOD security rests on personnel accountability management

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Mobile devices are part of the enterprise security puzzle that often gets overlooked. While security teams often focus on endpoint security, less focus is placed on how to protect employees’ personal devices. 

Defense startup, Adyton, which today announced it has closed a $10 million series A funding round led by Khosla Ventures, aims to address this oversight with a secure mobile-first solution called Mustr.

Mustr is designed to enable distributed workforces to manage personnel, to perform real-time status checks on employees with secure document sharing, remote wipe and remote access-revocation capabilities. 

While Adyton’s approach is focused on protecting entities like the Department of Defense (DOD), it does highlight that personnel accountability management offers enterprises a new framework for mitigating human risk in bring your own device (BYOD) environments. 

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Securing BYOD environments in regulated industries 

One of the long-lasting legacies of the COVID-19 pandemic is the increased adoption of remote working. In September 2021, Gallup found that 45% of full-time employees were working partly or fully remotely. 

In these new remote environments, personal devices have led to the creation of BYOD environments, where employees are using a mix of their own devices and work devices to maintain productive. 

Ever since, securing personal devices has remained a challenge for organizations of all shapes and sizes, not least in highly regulated industries like the military. 

“Accountability is a core function in the military. In-person check-ins do not work when people are on the go, in field environments, or reacting to crisis situations. Leaders don’t always know if instructions are received and struggle to manually aggregate field data for reporting and decision-making,” said James Boyd, CEO and cofounder of Adyton. 

“Mustr has enabled defense leaders and individual service members to save countless hours of administrative work, identify service members in distress and make real-time, data-driven decisions to enhance operational readiness. Units use Mustr to improve the effectiveness of their training time, strengthen the command climate, and run operations more efficiently,” Boyd said. 

Mustr enables organizations in highly-regulated industries like the military to check on the status of remote workers while providing a mechanism to share documents under the protection of double encrypted data-at-rest, container-based encryption, FIPS 140-2 validated modules, and data-in-transit encryption. 

So far, the DoD uses the platform to maintain visibility over its distributed workforce of over three million personnel, which suggests this approach could also be used to increase transparency in other enterprises’ remote working environments.  

Mobile security solutions 

Mustr’s solution can loosely be described as a mobile security platform. The mobile security market is in a state of growth, with Fortune Business Insights valuing the market at $34.9 billion in 2019 and projecting it will reach $103.5 billion by 2027.

While Mustr doesn’t have a direct competitor in terms of its feature-set, other providers in the market are also taking steps to mitigate the risks facing mobile devices. 

For instance, Palo Alto Networks GlobalProtect provides secure remote access and identity-based access controls to authenticate users before they can access sensitive resources. Palo Alto Networks recently announced raising fourth quarter revenue of $1.6 billion in 2022. 

Another potential competitor is Check Point with Harmony Mobile, which offers file protection capabilities to prevent users from downloading malicious files to mobile devices and real-time assessments designed to detect vulnerabilities and configurations that could leave devices at risk. 

Check Point announced raising $2.2 billion in revenue during 2021.  

At this stage, Mustr’s main differentiation is its use of double encryption, and its focus on BYOD security. “Mustr is a one-of-a kind mobile technology platform, making “bring your own device” a reality for the most highly regulated organizations. There is no other product like this on the market,” Boyd said. 

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