How much information about your company’s employees, processes, and daily operations is being revealed to outsiders through the mobile devices carried by your employees? According to new data from two different sources, it’s probably a lot more than you think.Read More
Sanjay Gupta, Vice President of the Fusion Middleware group at Oracle India, recently took to the pages of India’s Business Today to opine that the biggest ongoing problem most enterprises have with employee-owned devices boils down to the lack of mutual trust.Read More
Did your company celebrate data privacy day yesterday? Most did not – and that’s a shame.Read More
As any IT professional can attest, the main challenge with BYOD can be summed up in a single sentence. “IT does not control the content and configuration of the device.”
Since the mobile devices belong to individual employees, IT policies calling for the company to view or wipe personal data are problematic. So most enterprise mobility management or mobile device management tools piggy-back on top of the user’s personal data, so that it can be removed when the device is no longer used for work.Read More
According to a February 2013 report from Zogby Analytics, nearly 80 percent of American investors say they aren’t likely to invest in companies that have suffered multiple cyber attacks. It’s no wonder, since analysts at the Ponemon Institute estimate that data breaches cost large enterprises an average of $5.4 million per breach and can erode brand value by hundreds of millions of dollars.Read More
This Halloween, the cautionary warning for businesses of all size is: Beware of the cyber ogre!Read More
Now that mobile devices are rapidly becoming the primary end-user computing platform in many workplaces, the world of information security is undergoing a profound shift. That’s because securing corporate data and minimizing risk requires a different approach in a mobile first world than in a PC-centric computing environment. That’s the key message in a new white paper from Breezy partner MobileIron, which is available for free download at this link.
The 12-page white paper explains that there are two key reasons why IT needs to adopt new strategies for securing corporate data on mobile devices, as compared to PCs. First, IT has reduced control over mobile devices. The Mobile First era is all about the end user. They get to pick a mobile platform that best meets their personal preferences, with the expectation that the device should also work in a business context for the full range of apps and content needed to stay productive.
This is in stark contrast from the PC era where IT offered end-users an approved PC with a set of pre-selected apps. End-users had very limited say on what the PC was able to access and IT had the ability to control every aspect of the corporate-owned device from physical ports, to software and application versions. For mobile, end-users make the decision for many of these variables and IT can only recommend devices and applications. IT has no way to enforce a standard OS, device or app across the organization. In fact, the more IT tries to lock down devices, the more end-users will try to by-pass policies, increasing risk to the organization, the report says.
Second, old security models are no longer relevant. In the PC operating system scenario, the agent-based security method worked well. This involved a piece of software residing on the PC that controlled the process and data belonging to other applications. Unfortunately, this agent-based security model cannot be used to secure Mobile because of the differences in the way these operating systems are designed.
Mobile operating systems are designed using a sandboxed architecture which enables for isolation of apps and associated data which can only interact and share data through very well-defined mechanisms. This allows for greater security than the open-file system used by PC OS, and needs new tools that leverage specific security capabilities made available by the device vendor itself.
Different Threats Require Different Responses
Prat Agarwal, director of business development at secure mobile printing leader Breezy, agrees with the new MobileIron white paper that mobile devices expose company data to different threats. “Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) tools help companies minimize risk and protect data without interfering with end-user productivity,” Agarwal says. “The methods are different than those used in a PC-only environment, because the threats are different.”
The differences include device-based threats such as:
- Always-on connectivity which could allow unauthorized parties to access business data.
- Software vulnerabilities that allow “jailbreak” or “rooting” of devices, compromising data security.
- Portable form-factor making the devices susceptible to theft and misplacement.
In addition, mobile devices are always connected to the Internet, and users often rely on untrusted public networks that provide a way for malicious parties to access and intercept transmitted data using rouge access points, Wi-Fi sniffing tools, and sophisticated man-in-the-middle attacks. Agarwal says, “The only proven way to protect against man-in-the-middle attacks is on-device encryption. That’s why Breezy encrypts every file: so the simple act of sending a document to a printer doesn’t open the door to this kind of attack.
For more information about the kinds of threats posed by mobile devices, and how to combat them with proven tools, download the new MobileIron white paper, or the mobile threats infographic available at the same link, watch this video from Breezy, or download The Definitive Guide to Mobile Printing, a free ebook from Breezy.
Graphic credit: The graphic is part of an infographic called Security in the Mobile First Era by MobileIron; ©2014 MobileIron.
A Screw’s Loose is one of the more interesting technical blogs out there. Katz, a Director of Mobility Engineering at Sanofi and a widely recognized thought leader in enterprise mobility, wrote a great post recently on the a continuing gap between what users want and what IT delivers – and noted that the cause of that gap is the way IT views the users.
In the post, Katz writes that IT shouldn’t view employees as IT users, but as IT customers. Changing the definition makes a big difference in how products and services are developed, rolled out, and supported. “Whenever people talk about creating apps the conversation turns to delighting the customer. Companies build apps that will delight people. They will have a great user interface (UI) and an even better user experience (UX). They will enable people to do what they want/need to do. We learn from day one when you walk into a company it’s all about pleasing the customer. That’s why we build consumer apps the way that we do,” Katz wrote.Read More
As schools around the country kick off the 2014-2015 school year, the headlines seem tell a story of one school district after another abandoning highly touted programs to put laptop or tablets into the hands of every student. Here are just a few recent articles that seem to mark these programs as failures:Read More
IDC says that 1.2 billion workers were using mobile devices at the end of 2013. If there was a battle about whether or not mobile devices were welcome in the workplace, the war is over and users won. In fact, IDC says that the adoption of mobile technology is moving at unprecedented speeds, putting the needs and experience of end users at the forefront of any company's mobile enterprise strategy.Read More