Five years ago BlackBerry was the standard for mobile communications in the B.C. government. Now only 1

B.C. works to track mobile data spread

With 12,000 fast-evolving mobile devices, the B.C. government needs strict security, Auditor General Carol Bellringer says

A year ago, B.C. government staffers were unsuccessfully searching boxes in a Victoria-area warehouse, trying to find a missing backup hard drive containing 3.4 million education ministry student files.

Now the province is grappling with the next generation of data security, trying to keep track of 12,000 mobile phones and tablet computers that also may contain sensitive government or citizen information.

After data privacy breaches involving medical and other records, and a controversy over “triple deleting” staff emails that may be subject to freedom of information searches, the province’s Chief Information Officer launched a mobile device security program in June.

By the end of 2016 it will cover all 12,000 mobile devices used by the B.C. government, Betty Jo Hughes said in response to a report on data management released Tuesday by B.C. Auditor General Carol Bellringer.

“Existing controls include password protection, device encryption, ability to remotely wipe a device that is lost or stolen, and the ability to automatically lock a device that is inactive for a period of time,” Hughes wrote in response to the auditor’s report.

Bellringer found gaps in the government policy, including a lack of central monitoring and logging of mobile device activity.

“And, even though government provides security guidance to its employees when they’re issued a mobile device, it’s left to employees to actually apply some of the settings,” Bellringer said. “As a result, appropriate security settings are not always in place.”

 

Just Posted

Protester threatens citizens arrest during morning federal funding announcement in Oak Bay

Police escort protester away after confronting federal minister

Uplands Park designated a national heritage site

Feds make $4.3 million announcement in Oak Bay

Oak Bay police arrest one of two suspects after resident held at gunpoint

Police expect second arrest ‘in the very near future’ after armed robbery

Greater Victoria riders ready to race at track cycling provincials in Colwood

Westshore Velodrome to see a mix of new, older and master riders

Playground honouring RCMP constable and mother killed by drunk driver in Langford to open on time

‘There will be a few tears’: Sarah Beckett Memorial Playground opens on Aug. 24

VIDEO: Canadian zoos’ captive breeding programs help preserve endangered species

Programs considered last-ditch effort to prevent local extinctions of turtles, butterflies and more

Vancouver man arrested after pregnant woman’s SUV stolen, then crashed

Police are recommending charges against a 22-year-old Vancouver man

Elections Canada to assess ‘partisan’ climate change rhetoric case by case

People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier has said climate change is not an emergency nor caused by human

Unseasonable snow forces campers out of northeastern B.C. provincial park

Storm brought as much as 35 centimetres of snow to the Fort Nelson, Muncho Lake Park-Stone Mountain Park

B.C. log export rules killing us, northwest harvester says

NorthPac Forestry says Skeena Sawmills has plenty of timber

Environment groups warned saying climate change is real could be seen as partisan

Talk of climate change could be viewed as advocating against Maxime Bernier, the leader of the People’s Party of Canada

Search crews find 4-year-old boy who went missing near Mackenzie

George went missing early Saturday afternoon

Most Read