Get the most out of kiosk devices while securing them using MDM

Blog | 21-01-2022 | 4 minute read

Get the most out of kiosk devices while securing them using MDM

There’s a good chance we all interact with kiosks just as much as we do with humans, and this was true even before the pandemic. Self-service counters, airline check-in systems, library search devices, huge digital billboards for advertising, compact mobile devices for remote workers, ATMs at every corner, you name it.

Deploying devices as kiosks benefits different industries like healthcare, IT, retail, hospitality, financial services, entertainment, and the education sector. This is because it helps downsize overhead for the same work that can be simplified by a gadget if deployed properly, promotes a brand’s name, and increases productivity as employees can get work done on corporate devices minus distractions. So, with these benefits clouding around, who wouldn’t want to use kiosk devices to surge sales; make work life easier, especially in the era of remote work; and improve productivity?

But here’s the catch. Companies can find it challenging to secure their data when multiple users are interacting with these kiosk devices, which allow access to, store, and maintain both user and corporate data. And with kiosk devices needing to function continuously for long periods of time, device-based issues might almost seem unavoidable. But, somehow, IT admins need to find a way to get these devices up and running with the required apps, resources, and functionalities to make sure that critical tasks don’t take a hit.

Take a hospital, for instance. Numerous devices need to be used, all for different purposes. The standalone tablet with an app for patients to check in helps collect patients’ information, but it will need to be up and running around the clock. The nurse’s smartphone or tablet can quickly receive important notifications, store crucial documents, and transfer assessments, but it needs to have only the right apps to do so. Patients in the waiting room can check who’s next in line from a huge TV that displays only the information they want.

Or think about the devices a school deploys to ease learning and teaching methods. Devices handed out to students need to have only the apps needed to work on assignments and take tests without other resources that might cause disruption, while teachers need a different set of apps and more access to their devices. On another scene, banking services will require a higher level of security on their devices, and the apps on them, while keeping up with compliance or security policies. The list goes on, but the challenges to keep an eye out for are common across industries.

Here is a list of common points of concern that arise while managing kiosk devices, and how to solve them with a mobile device management (MDM) solution.

  1. Standalone devices with no assigned user in sight

Deploying kiosk devices in bulk can be a tough process given the various devices to onboard and manage. How will you install apps, push OS updates, and update important readable files to a multitude of devices? A lack of on-site support can lead to chaos without proper remote device management. Kiosks need to have the right apps and crucial settings and functionalities to give end users a seamless experience.

Mobile Device Manager Plus offers out-of-the-box enrollment methods to remotely bring multiple devices under management and get them ready for use as corporate kiosks. Configure only the required settings, choose which ones are essential for functionality, and block the ones that can cause potential misuse of devices.

You can then lock devices down to only a single app in the case of point-of-sale devices or digital signage, where only one app needs to be used always. Or pick a set of organization-approved apps that users can access to make necessary purchases, check in, and complete specific tasks. You can also let them access specific websites, and block malicious sites. The home screen layout of devices can also be customized to ensure users cannot swap the positions of apps or web shortcuts. You can also lock iOS devices using Autonomous Single App Mode to give users access to an app only till a certain task is done.

  1. Unreliable devices and improper device maintenance

Kiosk devices need to function almost continuously to carry out tasks. Imagine if a device stops working mid-transaction or its battery runs out while a customer is in the middle of reading the terms and conditions before an important purchase. If your inventory isn’t at its best, unreliable devices may be used as kiosks, which only adds to the IT admin’s headaches.

With Mobile Device Manager Plus, you can schedule a device to be rebooted at a certain time—say, prior to work hours—so its cache is cleared. This boosts device performance and makes sure the device has no remnant of the previous user’s data that could hinder productivity. You can also schedule a device shutdown post work hours to ensure that battery and device performance doesn’t take a hit. These actions can be scheduled based on the organization’s need, either daily or weekly at a specific time, so there’s no worry about sitting down to execute these tasks on different device groups or departmental devices each day.

Moreover, in the era of remote work, being able to reboot or turn off corporate devices before and after work hours helps maintain device health and ensures that you can track the device during required hours only. You can regularly check the battery levels of all your devices being managed and configure alerts for if a device’s battery level goes down to a certain percentage.

  1. Constant risks to corporate devices and data

Ensuring the device is secure enough, while giving the user a good experience as they access the device, is probably the hardest MDM challenge. Without advanced security imposed on kiosks, data leaks that could jeopardize the company are right around the corner. Also, without effective measures taken, there’s a good chance that repeated usage of devices, or users tampering with different buttons or controls on devices, will lead to device damage and slow down device performance. Being compact, mobile devices are always prone to theft as well.

Guarantee all-around device and data protection by restricting specific controls on the device, like Bluetooth, AirDrop, or sharing passwords, and disabling the status and task bars. This ensures that users cannot share any data to sources that are not verified by management. Set up a certain volume level that users cannot change, and hide sensitive business-related notifications from appearing on kiosks during work sessions.

In the unfortunate event of a device getting misplaced or lost, you can remotely lock it, get its location, and immediately erase any sensitive information from it to safeguard corporate data from being misused. You can also configure security actions to be executed on devices if they leave a specific geographical boundary.

Get a 30-day free trial today to explore Kiosk Mode and other features in Mobile Device Manager Plus.

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