Mobile Security Solutions Moving from Threat Assessment to Managed Services

John Marcus

John Marcus

Summary Bullets:

  • Most mobile security services for the enterprise still focus on advisory and integration, stopping short of fully managed services.
  • This should change soon, as managed solutions increasingly hit the market, but managed mobile security will be baked into more comprehensive mobile device management (MDM) solutions rather than packaged as a standalone offering.

In yesterday’s IT Connection blog post on IT service providers and mobility, Kitty Weldon wrote about how 2013 has seen noticeable activity – rather than just talk – when it comes to key players delivering mobile-centric services to the enterprise.  “ITSPs are gaining an increasing share of mobility-oriented enterprise business, especially in areas such as mobile strategy and mobile application development and enablement (which is to be expected), but also for mobile device management and mobile security.”  The security piece is especially intriguing, as a number of professional and managed services focused on the intersection of MDM and security have been rolled out (or at least announced) in the last couple months, and the impression given by service providers is that they cannot get their solutions out fast enough to answer enterprise demand for external knowledge, advice and operational assistance in the wake of the flood of devices overrunning their IT landscapes. Read more of this post

In Securing Mobile Document Sharing, Preserve End Users’ Experience, but be Kind to IT, Too

Paula Musich

Paula Musich

Summary Bullets:

  • Mobile device management is passé:  now enterprises are looking to secure mobile apps and more importantly, mobile document sharing.
  • While preserving the user experience is paramount to insure end user buy-in, it’s also important to avoid layering on still more operational complexity.

As IT shops begin to look beyond basic mobile device management functionality and address the insecurity created by mobile users’ putting sensitive corporate documents in cloud storage and document sharing services such as DropBox and Google Drive , it’s important to preserve the ease of use experience for those end users.  A raft of new, more secure mobile content management offerings are washing up on IT’s shores, and each takes a different approach to delivering the security that IT and the business require, while enabling mobile users to access, share, edit and move corporate documents around.  While some, like Box with its OneCloud, build a model based on proprietary cloud storage, others such as Airwatch with its Secure Content Locker emphasize advanced security and flexible storage, by both integrating with existing cloud storage such as Microsoft’s SkyDrive or HP’s cloud and providing its own storage option.  Read more of this post

BYOD and Smartphones as POS Terminals Don’t Mix!

Paula Musich

Paula Musich

Summary Bullets:  

  • Retailers should resist the urge to have employees use their own smartphones or tablets as point of sales terminals for credit card transactions
  • Mobile malware has a fast growth trajectory, and retailers are a prime target for cybercrime

Here’s a really terrible idea: retailers allowing employees to use their personal smartphones or tablets to process credit card transactions on behalf of their employers. This caught my eye recently after the PCI Security Standards Council released its “PCI Mobile Payment Acceptance Security Guidelines for Merchants as End-Users” document, which does not recommend that activity as a best practice. Now there’s an understatement. Just because there’s an app for that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to allow just any smartphone or tablet to act as a point of sale (POS) device in the retail world. The PCI Security Standards Council rightly pointed out to merchants that they have an end-to-end responsibility for the mobile app employed to process payments, the back-end processes and the security of a device that in this case they would not own. Read more of this post

SAP Takes on IBM in 2013 with Simplified Enterprise Mobile Solution

Charlotte Dunlap

Charlotte Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • SAP’s rebranded SAP Mobile Platform integrates Sybase SUP, Syclo Agentry, and eventually all of Mobiliser
  • SAP’s go-to-market strategy is based on simplified MEAP, channel support, continued third-party development tool support

Following a whirlwind year in which SAP appeared to spend all its marketing dollars on its SAP HANA database product, SAP’s mobile platform news will be finally coming out of the shadows. Following the acquisition of Syclo early last year, the company has aggressive integration plans in 2013 aimed at simplifying and strengthening its mobile portfolio and insuring it stays on the radar of core competitors including IBM, Antenna, and eventually Oracle.  Read more of this post

‘Live’ from CTIA: Day One at MobileCon

Kathryn Weldon

Kathryn Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • MobileCon (née CTIA Wireless) 2012 is nearly half over, and while it is by far the smallest Fall CTIA show yet, the major vendors in the enterprise mobility ecosystem showed up to demo their wares, hold informational sessions, and talk to the analyst community.  There has even been a sprinkling of announcements.
  • While the fate of the show itself may be in doubt, the growth of both the overall enterprise mobility market and the M2M segment in particular is apparent.  The usual suspects (operators, mobile device management/mobile application management vendors, smartphone manufacturers, m-health providers, UC enablers, mobile application ISVs, systems integrators, and M2M aggregators and technology suppliers) are all here.  So, what were some of the major announcement from Day One?

Sierra Wireless announced a major new partner, Amazon Web Services, which will be providing Sierra customers with its cloud-based infrastructure on which to run their M2M applications.  The Sierra AirVantage cloud (which provides asset, data, and device management) has been integrated with Amazon’s service to provide a joint offer for building and deploying M2M applications with no IT infrastructure costs. Read more of this post

One Gigabit WLAN Speeds Coming Sooner Than You Think; Is Your IT Shop Ready?

M. Spanbauer

M. Spanbauer

Summary Bullets:         

  • The combination of the “bring your own device” (BYOD) phenomena and higher-speed WLAN access will further exacerbate IT challenges.
  • Processing power on the next generation of tablets and phones will change the paradigm for how enterprise users interact with their applications.

If you have not yet heard, the IEEE’s 802.11ac wireless LAN standard is imminent, and while the standard still may not be ratified for up to a year, this will not stop product developers from taking advantage of early release chips in the hyper-competitive consumer space.  However, this also matters to the enterprise IT department, as some of these devices are incredibly powerful, such as the ASUS Transformer Prime, the first quad-core tablet (though it does not have an .11ac radio).  There is also speculation that the iPad 3 will possess a comparably powerful chip.  This processing power opens up new potential opportunities for malicious damage to be done via rogue security software (or ‘rogueware’).  Still, with the advent of this much faster WLAN specification (speeds up to 1.3 Gbps will be possible), we may also see radical changes to the ways in which users access applications and interact with these resources.  Consider that these new tablets, phones, etc. will have processing power surpassing the desktops of just a couple years ago, as well as a mobile 1G throughput capacity.  This throughput and CPU performance should smash any limitations from a performance perspective for VDI and alter the ways in which we interact with critical applications. Read more of this post

New Developments in BYOD: How to Keep IT and Employees Happy at the Same Time

K. Weldon

K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • The current generation of solutions for dealing with use of personal mobile devices in the enterprise have been an unsatisfactory compromise between IT control and employee flexibility
  • A new generation of technologies is poised to solve the problem of dual personas with less complexity and more flexibility for both the business and the employee

Enterprises are changing their minds about allowing employees to bring in their own mobile devices to work, because it’s actually a huge money-saver. Why shell out scarce dollars for new corporate-owned cell phones when employees are already buying the latest devices? Corporate-liable ownership is starting to go the way of company cars and even company-owned laptops. The problem is that smartphones are now frighteningly capable computers that can access internal corporate information behind the firewall, can store confidential emails, documents and customer data, surf the internet, become virus-ridden, and are much more likely than laptops to be left in a taxicab (or a bar). Read more of this post