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With the news of the UK government's use of WhatsApp messaging to complete official business relating to COVID-19 decisions, there's increased debate around the corporate use of third party-messaging apps.

It is estimated that 87 percent of organisations worldwide  rely on employees using personal mobile devices to access business apps and services, but how robust is their internal auditing and decision-making if they cannot guarantee a data trail?

It's a concern that has been bubbling for some time, and was one of the themes Ideagen included in our 2023 Predictions report as something all businesses should be thinking about this year.

Just a few months ago, The Department for Justice in the United States issued revised corporate crime policies which included employee-owned devices and third-party messaging apps. The main concern from their perspective was that organisations need to ensure that their corporate compliance can be evidenced, and information retrieved in the event of a prosecution.

It also has significant financial implications. In 2022 fines of just short two billion US dollars (£1.68bn) were issued by The Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodities Future Trading Commission (CFTC), against brokers and financial institutions for failures to "... maintain and preserve electronic communications."

However, third-party messaging apps offer businesses an efficient and cost-effective way to stay connected with their employees and customers. Many customers prefer them as a method of instant one-to-one communications.

Additionally, these apps provide useful features such as group chat capabilities, emojis, audio messages, file sharing options, and more. All of these advantages make third-party messaging apps invaluable tools for businesses seeking improved communication methods.

But organisations using them need to consider how critical conversations between team members and customers are being recorded properly and accurately. It's potentially a good time to review your BYOD policies and provide clear guidance on use of third-party applications and record keeping processes.

As our CEO, Ben Dorks, says in the report: “2022 was the year we focussed in on the robustness of business plans. Our findings for 2023 show that, this is the year we need to focus on the robustness of our people.

“The success (or survival) of an organisation is intrinsically linked to how it invests in its human capital. Businesses will need to look inward in order to flourish externally.”

Finally, as we're sure certain former politicians will agree, consider including BYOD within your risk assessments moving into 2023 and avoid any unwanted headlines.

To find out more things you might need to look out for in 2023, you can download our report. Or for solutions to help you manage your risk, visit our solutions pages.

Written by

Rebecca Watson

As Global PR Manager, Rebecca uses her 28-years working in media and communications to champion the safe hands and quiet voices who use Ideagen's software solutions. Having worked in a number of regulated industries including energy, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, criminal justice construction, high-value manufacturing, engineering and logistics, she uses this knowledge to build relationships with journalists and help them understand the challenges.

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