Jul 012011
 

What is happening with smartphones, tablets, and other devices is that with having this equipment in the workplace, IT may now be required to provide access and support for the users.

It used to be that one could offer a Blackberry device and you’re done. Users are happy and you are safe and secure.  Now with proliferations of consumer devices like iPads, etc., offering only Blackberry as a solution is no longer an option.

A Whackamole situation is now emerging; where you attack the head that pops up with the mallet, hoping it will not reappear but it always does. How do you embrace these devices and have a security architecture and policy framework that accommodates these various devices?

Architecture decisions are at the core of this topic.  I really don’t care which Suite you chose (Vmware, Citrix, Microsoft, etc.) in the diagram below. What I do care about is can you answer and deploy your apps to BYOD gear in these 6 areas?

Also, can you confidently prove how you plan on granting access to your applications using various devices across your architecture?  You are responsible for granting ‘cross device access’.

How can ubiquitous access be granted with the fewest, fewest, simplest methods possible?  It all starts with architecture which you can see below.

Mar 012010
 

Last week’s Virtual Roundtable on Smartphone and Mobile Computing was enlightening for everyone.  As usual, there was a great sharing of experiences and tips from the group regarding what CIOs are currently doing to manage risk in their enterprises.

I have attached the PowerPoint presentation that I used as a guide for the discussion.  In addition to the presentation, survey results accompany the PowerPoint download.

From last week’s agenda, please rate the following meeting topics related to mobile phones:

  • Which phones do you support?
    Flip, Treo, Android, iPhone, Blackberry
  • Do you have smart phone based applications?
  • What number of smart phones are supported in the organization?
  • Do you allow personal phones

    to access corporate data?

  • What % of help desk time is used to support random Smart Phone users?
  • What procurement method does your company support?
  • What is the coolest security product you have seen for Smart Phones?
  • What are your biggest concerns?

One of the areas that came up during the conversation was encryption of devices.  Here are the three products that were discussed and mentioned in the VRT (Point Sec, Bit Locker, and Credant Mobile Guardian)

Nov 172009
 

I have been asked many times about iPhones from the CIOs in the group.  Over the past few weeks, I have sat in on several conference calls with clients who are being pressured by execs to open up their infrastructures to iPhone access.

My opinion on this parallels with what one of my favorite analyst organizations – Burton Group – is saying on the subject.

Is iPhone Ready for the Enterprise? Part 1:   The iPhone has been called a major advancement in mobile technology for the mass consumer market, but does the iPhone have a place in the Enterprise?

Is iPhone Ready for the Enterprise? Part 2:   In this Burton Group panel discussion Jamie Lewis, CEO and Research Chair of Burton Group, will lead a discussion of the iPhone and its place in the Enterprise.

There is no point getting upset about this because Apple never said iPhones were meant as an Enterprise product.  They were meant to be sold to the masses which large numbers of ubiquitous and unfettered access to applications that they control in the cloud.

The blend between work and life is upon us and the cool social toys are pressuring businesses to respond and react. Kids that are being hired over the next 1-3 years may ask to have emails delivered to their smartphones, however, and this is a big however; the Apple iPhone like Social Media Applications (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedI) will find their way into the Enterprise.   It is just going to happen.  One can only manage the pace of enterprise adoption at this point.

Why is the iPhone not ready for the Enterprise?
Although data transport is encrypted, data on the device is not!  These devices are managed by iTunes not by a Enterprise ready software suite like the BES (Blackberry Enterprise Server).  ‘Push’ email support is not in place yet.

Many of the financial institutions, health care, or general public companies that I talk with have some regulatory oversight.  Security, privacy and the breach of private data is a major concern with all of them.  At this point, I don’t see how iPhones are going to enhance the privacy and security posture of organizations.

My advice – users need to carry two phones. One for work and one for play.