Mobile Threat Catalogue

Breach of Privacy By MDM Administrator


Threat Category: Enterprise Mobility


Threat Description: End user privacy incursions by an administrator or attacker with administrative access to the EMM/MDM administrative console (e.g., tracking device location, call logs, text messages, personal contacts, etc).

Threat Origin

Worker Fired for Disabling GPS App That Tracked Her 24 Hours a Day [Updated] 1

Exploit Examples

Not Applicable

CVE Examples

Not Applicable

Possible Countermeasures


Ensure that the EMM/MDM console provides privacy controls to limit administrator access to privacy-sensitive information.

Configure EMM/MDM solutions to audit administrative access and activity, particularly with respects to privacy-sensitive information.

Configure EMM/MDM solutions to collect and audit only the minimal set of data necessary to meet the organization’s broader mobile device security goals.

Educate enterprise users about the privacy implications of enrolling their device into a EMM solution, such as clearly defining what data will be collected, and establishing procedures for resolving potential privacy violations.

To prevent the potential for an attacker to gain access to highly privacy-sensitive information, such as call logs, configure EMM solutions with workflows that require multiple adminstrators to authorize access to such information prior to its release by the system.

To further minimize the potential for EMM solutions to capture privacy-sensitive data, particularly for BYOD scenarios, deploy EMM solutions that discriminate the data collected when a device is being operated in a business context versus a personal context.


  1. D. Kravets, “Worker fired for disabling GPS app that track her 24 hours a day [Updated]”, Ars Technica, 11 May 2015; [accessed 8/23/2016]