Keeping customers’ data secure

Mobile devices have become a necessity in 2021. Both in personal and professional life, humans cannot live without them. Smart cell phones are often connected to work, and employees have access to valuable data even when away from the workplace. As a result, significant data breaches continue to increase and threaten the security of customer’s data. Companies generally take several methods to counteract this threat, but these often seem to be misunderstood and therefore ineffective. Due to the poor understanding of the issues and the methods for dealing with the problem, researchers are trying to use a more holistic approach to information security.

This is why researchers Ameen and al. (2021) propose a smartphone security compliance model for employees, which aims to improve and deepen their understanding of information security behavior. In addition, this model considers different environmental influences, such as at the national, organizational, technological, or personal ones.

This research focuses specifically on the safe use of smartphones in the workplace with Gen-Mobile employees. This company, like many others, allows and encourages its employees to use their mobile phones for their personal and professional needs. Participants are between 18 and 35 years old and come from different countries (UK, US, and UAE).

The results of the study shows that all those who wish to fully understand the issues related to the behavior of their employees in relation to the use of their smartphone should be aware of the following issues:

  • National cybersecurity policies.
  • Cultural differences
  • Specific threats related to the use of smartphones.

Indeed, the results of the study illustrate the differences in employee behavior depending on where they live. For example, national cybersecurity policies significantly impact participants’ behavioral intentions in the United States and the United Arab Emirates, but not in the United Kingdom. Also, the results emphasize the importance of informing employees about the issues and national regulations regarding the use of telephones because the participants who had a better knowledge of the laws had better behavioral intentions and better compliance with good practices.

Although this study is based on a single case, it illustrates the importance companies must place on the risks associated with the use of a smartphone linked to employer data. A considerable empirical contribution of this study is its cross-cultural analysis. Besides, the results allow companies to apply concrete means to increase their customers’ confidence and ensure that their reputation is not harmed.

To cite: Ameen, N., Tarhini, A., Hussain S. M., Madichie, N., Paul, J., Choudrie, J. (2021). Keeping customers’ data secure: A cross-cultural study of cybersecurity compliance among the Gen-Mobile workforce. Computers in Human Behavior.