Tuesday, October 25, 2011

BDO uses "Bit9 Parity Suite" to allow traveling associates to use corporate laptops for personal use when playing on the road

This morning, the Web Buyer’s Guide generated an email leading to a pdf download of a report by a company BDO USA, a professional services firm (link), on how it decided to allow its associates to use corporate laptops for personal and family purposes while on the road, since the associates have to travel so much.  It would be clumsy for employees to get two laptops (a personal and a corporate one) through TSA when flying (although this is usually permitted, at least domestically).

But when laptops were infected by malware or otherwise disabled, employees could be severely disrupted when traveling.   This risk increased with an “open” approach to personal use.  So BDO used a product called “Bit9 Parity Suite: Adaptive Application Whitelisting” to control the problem, link here. An application must be preapproved before it can be downloaded and installed on the travel all-purpose laptop.

As an HR matter, questions would still remain. Contact with family would be all right and ordinary social networking (Facebook and Twitter) might be OK, as would personal banking. But blogging to advance a personal political agenda might still be regarded as a “conflict of interest”.  Jobs requiring a lot of travel to visit clients do have their disadvantages. Sometimes you need "home field advantage" or that last at-bat. 

It’s hard to give a specific URL for the download, as Web Buyer’s takes you through a questionnaire (for sales and probably tracking) and generates a “personalized” URL. 

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