The bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and corporate-owned, personally-enabled (COPE) discussion has gained some traction over the past few months with some sectors showing movement that could mean momentum behind BYOD. A recent report on tablets, on the other hand, has added another variable to the lively discourse: sharing. What percentage of tablet owners share their tablet with other individuals in their household? We'll reveal the answer, along with other key findings from the study.

The J.D. Power and Associates 2013 U.S. Tablet Satisfaction Study  Volume 1 focused on the satisfaction of tablet owners and their future tablet consumption. More importantly, however, the report revealed an troubling security issue for many MSPs. According to the study, 51 percent of tablet owners share their device with at least one other person, leaving many businesses with an unknown factor: Who has access to my data?

Sharing devices at work is not the problem, but at home it can be

AirWatch Public Relations Manager Victor Cooper said via email that many organizations use shared devices, pointing to employees at hospitals or retail stores. Many of these devices are corporate-owned and include a mobile device management (MDM) tool that enables workers to sign in and out, but sharing these devices is not the problem.

"The JD Power study seems to indicate that people share tablets with those they are close with, such as family, instead of those they work with," he said. "For most companies, allowing BYOD but requesting that employees share the tablet for work purposes doesn’t make sense, especially from a liability and privacy perspective."

The study also revealed that 46 percent of tablet owners allow their children to use their tablets, opening up a number of possible ways for data to become lost or altered. Could either mobility management model address these concerns?

Think domestic, not foreign

We often worry about vulnerabilites from afar, right? For example, we often worry about family members driving long distances than we do if they're running to the corner store -- even though car accidents are more likely to occur closer to home. We do the same in the IT channel.

We construct scenarios that are likely to occur, but may not be the most probable. Normally we explain data being stolen or lost by an employee leaving a tablet on a public train, don't we? Maybe it's time we discuss the various scenarios at home, instead.

While both models can address mobility concerns, they cannot address the issue of a known user sharing a device, whether personally-owned or corporate-owned, to an unknown user.