How to Secure Your Company When a Mobile Device Is Lost or Stolen

How to Secure Your Company When a Mobile Device Is Lost or Stolen

No company wants to think about what will happen if their mobile device is lost or stolen. It’s not a pleasant scenario for a business to picture, but unfortunately, it does happen. A lost or stolen device can be a nightmare for your enterprise and your security team, since a ton of sensitive corporate data is stored on those devices. As such, your business needs to have a plan in place to deal with a lost or stolen mobile device should it ever happen.

Ideally, a business will have a strategy to deal with mobile devices being lost or stolen when they introduce those devices into their infrastructure. However, it’s never too soon to create security policies that address missing company devices. This plan will include policies that both your enterprise and its employees need to have in place beforehand, as well as steps they should take if a device is lost or stolen. We’ve listed tips on designing a lost/stolen mobile device security policy below!

One way to protect your company in the event of a lost or stolen mobile device is by integrating an enterprise mobility management (EMM). If you want to learn more about the benefits of EMM, you should check out our free 2019 MDM Buyer’s Guide. We profile the top vendors in the mobile device management field, their key capabilities, and our Bottom Line for each.

Report a lost or stolen device immediately

When a device goes missing, your enterprise needs to know about it as soon as possible. Most employees will be scared to admit that they’ve lost a vital business device, but the longer you wait to inform your company, the longer your company’s data will be exposed. Your company should establish who to report to if a device is lost or stolen, and it needs to stress how important it is to report this as soon as possible. However, to ease the minds of employees, a business shouldn’t use this report to reprimand the person who lost the device; your top priority should be knowing when a device is missing, and you shouldn’t make employees afraid to speak up when it happens.

Implement authentication and access control policies

When your device is lost or stolen, it could end up in the hands of someone who wants to access its data. To keep them from getting into the device, you need to set up authentication measures to every device when you deploy it into the infrastructure. By using passwords and biometrics, your business can make it harder for device holders to gain access.

Another important policy to implement is access monitoring, where your business uses a mobile device management (MDM) solution to track when somebody attempts to access a device. With this in place, your enterprise will know if somebody’s trying to open a device that’s been lost or stolen.

Enforce regulations for employee device usage

Sometimes, the biggest security threat for mobile devices is the employee themselves. If your workers aren’t responsible with their devices, then the likelihood of a lost or stolen device will increase significantly. Policies like banning connections to public WiFi networks, maintaining inventory checks, and GPS tracking will allow your enterprise to ensure devices are being looked after by your employees. Your enterprise should also train its employees on proper mobile device security policies and regulations. This is especially important if your company has a bring your own device (BYOD) policy and will be taking mobile devices out of the office regularly.

Use an MDM solution to remotely protect your device

Mobile device management solutions allow enterprises to secure and maintain control over the devices in their infrastructure. They also allow you to update, configure, and govern devices remotely. If a device goes missing, you don’t know who will be accessing that device — and the data stored within. To prevent anybody from accessing that data, you can use your MDM tool to remotely lock a device, change its passwords, or wipe all the corporate data contained within. In the worst case scenario, however, you may have to completely deactivate the device in order to protect it from unauthorized users.


If you want to learn more about the benefits of enterprise mobility management, you should check out our free 2019 MDM Buyer’s Guide. We profile the top vendors in the mobile device management field, their key capabilities, and our Bottom Line for each.

Daniel Hein

Dan is a tech writer who writes about Enterprise Cloud Strategy and Network Monitoring for Solutions Review. He graduated from Fitchburg State University with a Bachelor's in Professional Writing. You can reach him at dhein@solutionsreview.com
Daniel Hein