Posts Tagged ‘BYOD’
Friday, May 24th, 2013
With the proliferation of BYOD and cloud business apps, more companies are showing dissatisfaction with legacy on-premise phone systems or PBXs that are not designed for today’s mobility-centric, cloud-based work places.
In fact, 70 percent of IT directors, facility managers and CEOs from businesses using on-premise phone systems reported their phone systems lacking. This is based on a survey conducted on behalf of RingCentral, Inc., by Dimensional Research, an independent research firm.
In particular, these IT decision makers reported that their on-premise PBXs were not flexible enough to meet the needs of mobile and remote workers (22%) and integrate with business applications such as CRM (23%). They also found these systems difficult to manage and administer (23%) as well as too expensive (33%).
“The old-guard on-premise PBX was designed for the 1980s – an era when all employees came into the office, used desktops not laptops and didn’t own or carry mobile devices,” said Curtis Peterson, VP of operations at RingCentral, a cloud business phone solution provider, with 20 years of data and telecommunications experience.
“The way we work and communicate has changed profoundly since then. And the on-premise PBX can’t keep technological pace with today’s new mobility-centric business needs.”
In addition, ninety-two percent of these same survey respondents found the benefits of a cloud-based phone system compelling.
Top benefits included:
- Mobile apps that allow smartphones to be used as business extensions (55%)
- Simple to use interface for administration (52%)
- Easy to expand phone system as the business grows (52%)
- Eliminates set-up and ongoing maintenance for in-house phone system (45%)
- Reduction in cost (60%)
Friday, May 24th, 2013
Mobile video collaboration solutions are beginning to show signs of wider acceptance in the enterprises.
This is largely thanks to sanctioned BYOD policies which have allowed highly capable mobile devices to expand across workforces, according to a new report from Strategy Analytics: “Enterprise Mobile Video Collaboration.”
BYOD is credited with accelerating the adoption and use of mobile devices throughout all levels of the enterprise. BYOD has also been a key force pushing many applications developed for the consumer market into corporate use.
Video chat services such as FaceTime and Skype laid the foundation for users to where mobile video collaboration is now beginning to feel the corporate pull.
The ways which workers communicate have gone through dramatic transformations over the past decade as mobility transformed communication from one physical location connecting to another, to workers connecting through voice and data wherever they are. Video collaboration is next in line to be transformed by mobility.
Mobile video collaboration solutions allow live video captured with a mobile device to be streamed to other mobile devices, PCs or room-based conferencing systems.
The current worldwide user base totals less than half a million, but is expected to grow to more than 20 times that size over the next five years now that many of the essentials are in place.
Prepare for the impact on infrastructure
These include wireless broadband networks, pervasive Wi-Fi, a growing base of compatible mobile devices and an increasing acceptance of BYOD policies.
“Although the mobile video collaboration market is still relatively small, support for mobile devices is becoming a core component of nearly every enterprise video collaboration solution on the market and enterprises are clear on how improvements in communication are wins for worker productivity and work flow efficiency,” say Kevin Burden, Director of Mobility.
“Enterprises will need to prepare for the impact that such a resource intensive application will have on its infrastructure and budget which will undoubtedly include optimizing WiFi network capacity and corporate liable data plans.”
Thursday, May 23rd, 2013
A survey released today by CTIA-The Wireless Association found that what employees do, and what IT professionals think they are doing, are very different.
On behalf of CTIA, Harris Interactive conducted the survey on workplace technology practices and attitudes toward mobile security, which also showed some surprising results regarding knowledge of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD).
While only 30 percent of consumers were very or somewhat familiar with BYOD, 47 percent had never heard of it. Yet the numbers for IT professionals were more modest than expected with 55 percent who were very or somewhat familiar, while 26 percent admitted they had never heard of it.
More than half engage in BYOD use
Despite unfamiliarity with the term, when told the definition, more than half of users said they engaged in some sort of BYOD behavior.
While the percentages varied, the top five information or applications used by employees were email, calendar and scheduling, databases, company apps and directories.
Users and IT decision makers’ answers varied on a number of questions in the survey, but there were several areas of agreement. 47 percent of users said there was no formal policy at their office, which closely matched up with the 42 percent of IT experts who said there wasn’t one.
Employees trust their IT departments with 83 percent saying their smartphones are very or somewhat secure which climbed to 85 percent for tablets. The IT professionals were less optimistic, but still confident in their security efforts for smartphones (68 percent) and tablets (70 percent).
Whose responsibility is it?
When it comes to whose responsibility it is to keep the devices secure, both users (82 percent) and IT professionals (67 percent) say it’s the user’s primary duty. Regardless of a company’s size, both companies with less than 500 (72 percent) or 500 or more employees (62 percent) said it’s the employee’s responsibility.
When asked what steps they have taken to protect their mobile devices, consumers say they have installed or used software updates (63 percent); password/PINs (58 percent); anti-virus programs (43 percent); location tracking (38 percent); and an app to remote lock, locate and/or erase data (34 percent).
When asked what the IT department has done to protect the devices, users say they have installed or used password/PINs (34 percent); anti-virus programs (28 percent); software updates (26 percent); restrict downloads (25 percent); and restrict access to certain employees (22 percent).
Security less likely at smaller firms
This is similar to what IT professionals state they have installed or used: password/PINs (46 percent); anti-virus programs (38 percent); network certificates (37 percent); VPNs (31 percent) and restrict access to certain employees (31 percent).
Despite similar BYOD incidences for companies of all sizes, smaller companies (fewer than 500 employees) are less likely to take action to protect employees’ mobile devices and less likely to communicate the importance of protective security action to their employees.
Not surprisingly, their concerns over BYOD risks are low with 67 percent saying the benefits strongly or somewhat outweigh the risks.
This makes sense to us here at the TechJournal, where we deal with many tech startups. Few of those companies provide mobile devices to employees, who usually work on their own mobile equipment.
The survey was conducted in February 2013 with 250 Information Technology Decision Makers and more than 1,000 full-time employed mobile device users. The BYOD survey presentation is available at: http://ctia.it/10Yb2Tc (PDF).
For more information on how to protect one’s mobile devices, see: http://ctia.it/ST7xir
Tuesday, April 9th, 2013
Organizations seeking to maximize the economic and productivity benefits made possible by mobile technologies must look beyond simply which devices are used and re-examine business processes and workforce needs, new research released today by CompTIA concludes.
“Rather than focus on the device level, companies will need to assess the specific needs of their workforce and match the device,” said Seth Robinson , director, technology analysis, CompTIA.
“For maximum benefit, workflow changes will need to be considered prior to evaluating workforce needs. But this is not a trivial matter and companies will need to weigh the cost of operational disruption and change management against the potential advantages.”
At this point, most companies are not taking these steps, according to CompTIA’s Second Annual Trends in Enterprise Mobilitystudy. Most of the current activity revolves around devices – provisioning, securing and allowing access to existing systems.
The majority of companies in the CompTIA study allow their employees to bring their own mobile devices to work. The most popular option is to have a mix of corporate-liable and individual-liable devices (58 percent). A full third of companies still strictly mandate which devices can be used for work purposes and do not allow any type of employee-provided device. For another 8 percent of firms, employees provide everything.
As employees bring their own mobile device into the workplace, they also want to bring their own applications and services. As a result, the field of Mobile Device Management (MDM) is rapidly shifting to include Mobile Application Management (MAM).
Companies are pursuing a range of solutions, including exploring/implementing virtual desktops (49 percent), building custom mobile apps for business systems (29 percent) and moving business applications to a cloud model that can be accessed through a browser (28 percent).
Many Parts to Mobile Ecosystem
From an enterprise perspective, the mobile ecosystem – in conjunction with cloud offerings – presents a significant shift. Rather than having tight control over the entire experience, IT architects now must contend with devices that often serve dual purposes and connect to third-party systems. The accompanying chart illustrates this challenge.
This leads to many questions:
- Who is in charge of the physical device?
- Who controls the software on the device (including the OS?)
- Who controls the way the device connects?
- How secure are the backend systems that are accessed through mobile apps?
CompTIA’s Second Annual Trends in Enterprise Mobility study is based on an online survey of 502 IT and business executives inthe United States during February 2013. The full report is available at no cost to CompTIA members. Visit CompTIA.org or email@example.com for details.
Friday, March 29th, 2013
A new Web security study finds that the vast majority of organizations that allow employees to freely access the Web are experiencing high rates of malware threats, including phishing attacks, spyware, keyloggers and hacked passwords.
Conducted by Webroot,which sells Internet security as a service, the study reveals that Web-borne attacks are impacting businesses, with the majority of them reporting significant effects in the form of increased help desk time, reduced employee productivity and disruption of business activities.
We hate to harp on a single theme, but more and more studies show that cyber security is overwhelming many businesses as a nearly unbroken string of prominent hacks, security breaches and loss of information by major companies, organizations and even government agencies shows.
To mitigate these significant business risks a properly layered defense with effective endpoint and Web security and monitoring needs to be in place.
Top-level corporate study findings:
- 8 in 10 companies experienced one or more kinds of Web-borne attacks in 2012
- 88% of Web security administrators say Web browsing is a serious malware risk
- Phishing is the most prevalent Web-borne attack, affecting 55% of companies
The study, which surveyed Web security decision-makers in the United States and United Kingdom, found an overwhelming 79% percent of companies experienced Web-borne attacks in 2012.
These incidents continue to represent a significant threat to corporate brands. Results show that almost all of the Web security administrators agreed that Web browsing is a serious malware risk to their companies.
We’re online so much here at the TechJournal that we backup our own cloud-based antivirus program with regular scans by Malware Bytes (which has repeatedly found and deleted trojans and other malware missed by our other protection). We also use Spybot , which will immunize your system against many threats, and SuperAntispyware, which is very good at removing third party tracking cookies.
Despite the obvious awareness of the risks, only 56% of participants said they had implemented Web security protection and more than half of companies without Web security had Web sites compromised.
“Protecting against Web-borne malware should be a high priority for all organizations since once inside a network, the propagation of malware can take down the entire company, effectively disabling an organization,” said Sara Radicati , President and CEO at Radicati Group.
“Finding a balance between providing employees Web access and ensuring corporate information security requires a solid Web security solution and is an essential requirement for companies to avoid this costly liability.”
The major trends that are driving businesses and information technology today—mobility, social networking, BYOD and cloud computing—are also making organizations more susceptible to security attacks.
More than ever, cybercriminals are taking advantage of these Web-based vulnerabilities, making the threat landscape more challenging. According to the results, phishing represents one of the fastest-growing causes of breaches and data loss as cybercriminals become progressively adept at luring users into divulging sensitive corporate data.
“It’s no surprise that the latest study shows that attacks are increasing in frequency, complexity and scale. Organizations need to implement layered defenses from the endpoint to the network to understand not only what is happening but where the attacks are manifesting from and when,” said David Duncan , Chief Marketing Officer at Webroot.
“Given that instantaneous attacks are morphing constantly and are eluding traditional detection mechanisms, organizations require a cloud-based solution that is effective in this new environment, as well as easy to deploy, quick to respond and flexible to address today’s sophisticated cyber-threats.”
What can organizations do?
The new “Web Threats Expose Business to Data Loss” report provides a comprehensive analysis of the current Web-based vulnerabilities, and includes steps to reduce the risks associated with this rapidly changing threat landscape. The full report is available at http://www.webroot.com/web-security-report-2013.
Wednesday, March 20th, 2013
The top 2013 technology trends are fairly clear: cloud, BYOD, smart TVs, 3D printing, the Internet of things, big data. But SogetiLabs has identified several others we haven’t seen in every trend roundup, such as Jericho style security, agile methods and model driven engineering.
The SogetiLabs Technology Outlook 2013 was composed by polling a group of Sogeti experts who in turn based their input on direct conversations with clients and partners and their own view of the industry as well as.
The fast moving technology innovations impact companies across the world:
- On the technology side, the interest of our clients is moving away from the systems of record towards the systems of engagement.
- Concretely this is a move away from administrative processes towards using technology to improve or reinvent the real interaction with people.
- Many companies and organizations have a hard time to catch up to the many trends and innovations of the day.
“The best way to get ahead, to digest all things happening and distill them to form a clear course forward is to examine how the technology will be adopted and how the use of technology will then change the behavior of people. All of which is highly unpredictable,” said Erik van Ommeren , one of the Sogeti innovation and technology experts behind the new report.
Top 12 trends
The SogetiLabs Technology Outlook 2013 has defined 12 top trends showing off what is on the minds of customers, and what is expected to be important for 2013 and beyond.
- Mobile BYOD – Bring your own Device, being mobile at work stays a top trend. Supporting a connecting workforce through Mobile/BYOD makes organizations attractive to (new) employees and aims to increase work experience and productivity.
- Augmented Reality – Overlaying the physical world with a digital layer is changing the interaction between people, objects and information. Compare it to living your life inside Facebook.
- Smart TV – The ultimate media device: Interactive, HD and social, raising questions such as who is in control of the content. Integration of Internet and Web 2.0 features into television sets and set-top boxes, as well as the technological convergence between computers and these television sets/set-top boxes.
- Big Data – Big Data shows the hidden patterns in all sorts of data, helps predict behavior and enables predictive simulations. Big Data will improve customer insight, help you target customers and track sentiments online.
- Cloud Services – The business promise of Cloud Computing is simple: Worry-free IT. Current and expected adoption is enormous. New ways of software design are appearing and there will be great improvements in Cloud disaster recovery. In addition, real time analytics and Big Data will strengthen Cloud usage and storage of data.
- Jericho Style Security – Securing the data, not the device, is a continuing security trend which brings a more granular and flexible security approach.
- Privacy Enhancing Technologies – Technology can be used to turn privacy into a differentiating selling point. Big Data and other intrusive technologies require making Privacy a fundamental principle when designing new solutions.
- Quality Assurance Across the Application Lifecycle – Testing of new applications is not enough anymore. A more complete Quality approach across the entire Application Lifecycle is one key success factor for today. Testing or Quality are no longer restricted to the test teams, it is a shared IT and business responsibility.
- Agile Methods – Agile has become a new paradigm to manage projects focusing on transparency, collaboration, iterative and incremental development resulting in significantly reducing the time-to-market. While initially Agile was mostly used in IT, it is now increasingly also applied in “business” projects.
- Model Driven Engineering – With the maturity of modeling tools, Models are no longer used only for documentation in the software development process, they are now an integral part of the development and even operations process, allowing traceability between models, code generation, and automated testing.
- 3D Printing – 3D Printing will transform product information, non-food retail and create an explosion of personalization. In short, consumers take over! 3D printing fosters a design and production agility which is a key factor for the years to come.
- Internet of Things – Connecting physical things to the internet makes it possible to access remote sensor data and to control the physical world from a distance. Sensors and smart devices will be making our lives easier and allow for optimization of large complex systems such as transportation grids, utilities, healthcare and others. New synergistic services will be developed that go beyond the possibilities of the current isolated embedded system.
The SogetiLabs Technology Outlook 2013 is available for download in the Sogeti online bookstore: http://www.ict-books.com/books/inspiration-trends/tech-outlook-2013-web-detail
Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
According to iGR’s February 2013 survey of IT managers at U.S. SMBs, nearly 62 percent of employees reported an official “bring your own device” (BYOD) policy at their company.
Additionally, 73 percent of employees reported that their company unofficially permits its employees to use personal devices for work purposes (i.e., the company is aware that employees bring devices, but has not officially allowed or banned the practice).
“Rather than reaching saturation, our survey results show that the number of employees who bring their own devices has grown significantly since 2012,” said Iain Gillott, president and founder of iGR, a market research consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile industry.
“There continue to be opportunities for BYOD solutions and strategies in this market. We found that the Bring Your Own Device trend is growing for tablets, as well as smartphones.”
iGR’s new market research report, SMBs: The Ongoing BYOD Trend, provides an overview of the adoption of Bring Your Own Device policies at SMBs in the U.S. It is an update to iGR’s 2012 report on the same topic.
The new report can be purchased and downloaded directly from iGR’s website at www.iGR-inc.com.
Tuesday, March 5th, 2013
Half of companies have lost a device with important company data on it, causing security implications for over a fifth of organizations.
Further, 57% of employees believe that BYOD puts their personal data at risk as well. Despite these concerns, the study also revealed that 86% of the workforce are obsessed with their devices.
Employees device obsessed
According to the findings, almost three quarters of employees are now allowed to access company data from their personal devices.
In fact, regardless of whether they were in a BYOD-approved environment or not, employees equally appear to be device obsessed — nearly 86% of employees use their devices for work all day and night, with 44% doing so even during meals.
Additionally, 20% of respondents consider themselves “borderline workaholic,” 15% bring their devices on vacation, and 7% claim that their work and home lives are one.
Major security implications
This growing trend to work remotely is likely to have an impact on breaches and data leakages as mobile devices continue to have major security implications.
Half of respondents stated that someone within their company has lost a device with important company data on it — and over a fifth admitted that a lost device had created a security implication for their company.
The study found that implementing a BYOD policy seems to have a small, though arguably statistically insignificant, positive effect on security as illustrated by a 5% drop in incidents at companies that have a BYOD policy.
Personal data also at risk?
By far the most popular method to secure mobile devices is password protection (57%), followed by 35% who wipe devices remotely, and 24% who use encryption.
Surprisingly, employees were not just concerned with their organization’s security. A staggering 57% believe that using a personal device for work could pose a security risk to them personally through potential leakage and misuse of confidential health and personal information.
At the same time, productivity drain is greater for companies that allow BYOD — nearly a quarter of employees stated that they spend more time than they care to admit using their personal device for personal use during work hours.
“Being connected to work around the clock appears to be accepted as the ‘new normal,’” said David Gibson, VP of Strategy at Varonis.
How companies can protect their data
- Developing a BYOD policy that lets people know what is and isn’t allowed.
- Making sure controls are appropriate to the risks — if the data is valuable, organizations need to control where it resides and who has access to it, need to be able to audit use, spot abuse.
- Monitoring the effects of frequent interruptions and ‘always on’ habits to watch for signs of impaired productivity or health.
“Only by limiting the potential damage — both to organizations and employees — can organizations make the most of a trend that will continue to leap forward, whether businesses allow it to or not.”
To download the full BYOD research report, visit http://hub.varonis.com/BYOD-report
Friday, December 14th, 2012
The majority of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) employees are not properly disposing of or wiping corporate information from personal devices when upgrading to the latest tablets and smartphones, according to a survey by Fiberlink, which sells cloud-based mobile management software.
These findings come at a critical time, when holiday sales of wireless connected devices are expected to surge, and employees will look to infuse new technologies into the workforce at record rates. So, what happens to all the displaced devices?
According to the survey of U.S. adults who previously had a smartphone and/or tablets before the one(s) they currently use for work, only 16% had the data professionally wiped from the old device and only 5% had the device securely destroyed.
Protecting corporate data a priority
“Protecting corporate data on personal devices is a key priority for all companies. This survey raises new concerns that companies must address in order to safeguard sensitive information as devices approach the end of their lifecycle,” said Jonathan Dale , Director of Marketing at Fiberlink.
“With new devices hitting the market from every major manufacturer this holiday season, including Apple, Microsoft, and Google, it will be important to know the right way to decommission a device.”
If you’re an employee or employer looking to swap out a BYOD device, Fiberlink has developed a four-step process to make sure your device deactivation is easy and stress-free.
- Notify Your IT Department. Once you receive a new device and want to use it for your company’s BYOD program, send your IT department a note and let them know you will be swapping devices.
- Transfer Corporate Materials to Your New Device. Have your IT department quickly transfer all corporate materials from the old device to the new device through their mobile device management (MDM) platform. This generally involves enrolling in an MDM solution which pushes down corporate e-mail and Wi-Fi profiles, applications and corporate documents. If you don’t have an MDM solution, ask your IT department to assist with transferring data, although it could take much longer.
- Extract Personal Data from Your Device. Now that your corporate data has been transferred to the new device, remove and save all personal files. This can be accomplished with the native tools and back-up services of the operative system or the manufacture (e.g., Apple’s iCloud and Google Drive).
- Erase all Remaining Personal and Corporate Data. Fully decommission the old device by removing all personal and corporate data. Make sure to delete all data. Most devices have an option in the setting menu to perform a factory data reset which will wipe the data completely. This can also be accomplished remotely by an MDM platform. Note: In some tablets and smartphones, you should manually remove the storage card and use it in your new device or erase the data from it as well.
PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1wR9h)
Thursday, November 8th, 2012
Enterprises have adopted smartphones and tablet computers at a dazzling pace, providing access to corporate data regardless of where a worker may be, but they come with a downside. It makes companies vulnerable to operational, compliance, and security challenges.
companies are increasingly opting for dedicated mobile device management (MDM) solutions to provide access to corporate resources in a secure and scalable manner.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, U.S. Mobile Device Management (MDM) Market, finds that the market earned revenues of more than $178.6 million in 2011 and estimates this to reach $712.4 million in 2018.
“Product capabilities, costs, quality, and timeliness of service are the four major factors consumers look for in MDM solutions,” said Frost & Sullivan Principal Analyst Vikrant Gandhi. “These solutions work best when they are in line with the corporate policies and structure of the organization.”
Frost & Sullivan’s research indicates that companies prefer comprehensive MDM systems that can help manage different types of devices – including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Windows Phone. Therefore, point solutions such as enterprise application management or device remediation may not be successful in the long run.
The biggest challenge lies in managing corporate- and individual-liable mobile devices in a cost-effective, secure, and scalable manner. While enterprises cannot impose extremely restrictive policies for personally liable devices, they also must not compromise security.
“Therefore, a middle-ground is crucial,” said Gandhi. “Businesses that successfully leverage mobility to manage the shift to an all-virtual corporate environment will drive greater efficiency and operational advantages over their peers.”
It is imperative to address the challenges in MDM now, as the absence of a well-defined strategy may hurt future prospects.
Friday, September 28th, 2012
Business users are alarmed about employers’ ability to access and collect personally identifiable information (PII) through the mobile devices, such as iPhones, iPads and Androids they bring to work.
As the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend sweeps across the business world, it raises a significant management challenge for companies and has implications that go beyond the IT department and raises privacy issues.
Although many may not know it, some employers are able to track employee locations during work and non-work hours, which applications they’ve installed and review or delete personal pictures and music.
Privacy concerns are real
Location and app inventory information is available whenever employees “opt-in” to a mobile device management application – the solution that enables BYOD, security, policy enforcement, and app management for many organizations.
The removal of personal files, pictures and music is also possible, even if the user is simply getting access to corporate email through Exchange ActiveSync. Unless they are specifically informed through an acceptable user agreement and mobile policy, many employees have no idea that this is possible.
The Fiberlink-commissioned Harris survey found that business users are overwhelmingly concerned, and would not allow employers to have this access into their personal lives.
The results show significant employee concern:
- 82 percent of respondents consider this ability to be “tracked” an invasion of their privacy. Tracking is easily accomplished through a number of technologies built into most of the popular smartphones. Tracking with an MDM solution can be accomplished using GPS and triangulation, which provides a company with a way to locate where a device is physically located.
- Similarly, 76 percent of respondents would not give their employer access to view what applications are installed on their personal device. What users install on their personal device is considered private information.
- 75 percent of respondents would not allow their employer to install an app on their personal phone which gives the company the ability to locate them during work and non-work hours in exchange for receiving corporate email and gaining access to other corporate resources.
- Business users expressed a great deal of concern about their employers looking into their lives. In fact, very few respondents expressed no concern.
- 82 percent are concerned to extremely concerned about their employers tracking websites they browse on personal devices during non-work time
- 86 percent are concerned to extremely concerned about the unauthorized deletion of their personal pictures, music, and email profiles
- Only 15 percent are not at all concerned about employers tracking their location during non-work time
- Only 15 percent are not at all concerned about employers tracking personal apps installed on their devices
“No other IT tool is attached at the hip or full of personal data quite like a smartphone or tablet,” said Chris Hazelton, Research Director for Mobile & Wireless at 451 Research. “Because of this, it is critical that IT is able to provide a level of privacy where applicable, particularly around location and app usage, for the growing number of employees who are choosing to bring their own devices to work.”
“Bring your Own Device policies are commonplace across most organizations. The survey results show that the vulnerability of personally identifiable information is a significant concern, and that organizations need to be just as concerned about user privacy as they are about the security of corporate data,” said Christopher Clark, president at Fiberlink.
“However, the situation can be easily solved by IT by using a mobile device management solution that can set Privacy Settings to stop collecting personal data from staff members, but these measures are rarely put in place.”
Wednesday, August 1st, 2012
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is having an increasing impact on the IT service landscape.
But new findings in OnForce’s Q3 Confidence Index, a poll that reflects the opinion of more than 500 technology service professionals nationwide, raises red flags regarding the trend.
According to the study, which is not the first to address the issue by any means, more than half of technicians that do BYOD work reported a 25 percent or more increase in the number of requests for personal mobile device configuration and/or setup at businesses in the past six months.
Mounting Pressure for Instant Expertise
What’s alarming: A mere 31 percent of those surveyed have seen an increase in requests for mobile device security during the same timeframe.
“As businesses implement BYOD, there are significant mobile security issues to keep in mind,” said Gene Morris, General Manager at BrightStar Enterprise Solutions Inc, a company at the forefront of the issue that’s tapping OnForce’s platform. “I help businesses connect and configure personal mobile devices, and at the same time consult with them about the security risks. As BYOD continues to infiltrate the business environment, we do anticipate a significant uptick in mobile security implementations in the next 8-12 months.”
IT service businesses and technicians are under tremendous pressure to constantly expand expertise and broaden skills as new devices and application emerge. And the explosion of devices isn’t slowing down any time soon.
In fact, two out of three technicians surveyed said they’ve seen increased diversity in the devices at the businesses they serve in the past six months. On average, IT service technicians connect approximately 14 personal devices for businesses per service event and the majority (58 percent) reported an increase in the n
Slowly Rising Confidence, Falling Outlook
Although still pessimistic, current confidence among IT service technicians has slowly but significantly risen to an all time high in the past nine months from 37 to 45. This increasing optimism about the current economic climate is a positive sign; however, IT service professionals are growing less optimistic about the future.
In fact, the future confidence has dropped to 56, the lowest we’ve seen in 2012. Interestingly, the percentage of technicians who are uncertain about the future remains high for the fourth quarter in a row, coming in at 25 percent; and those who say the economic climate has had no impact on their business has remained consistent.
||(Forecast for the next 6 months)
|I don’t know
||I don’t know
“Uncertainty surrounding the future has been consistent, but it’s interesting and encouraging to see increasing optimism in the past nine months across the technician community,” added Cannone. “I’m excited to see what kind of an impact the upcoming presidential election will have on the current and future outlook for IT service technicians.”
The Q3 2012 forecast survey was conducted from July 23 – 24, 2012.
Friday, July 27th, 2012
A new reputation report from Appthority identifies security issues raised by the “bring your own device” (BYOD) movement, app market fragmentation for developers, popular app categories and the sensitive data that apps can access.
Appthority identifies the security risks in mobile apps.
Here’s an infographic summarizing the report’s findings (click to enlarge).
The Appthority Platform analyzed the top 50 free apps from Apple’s App Store and Google Play for risky app behaviors.
App Reputation Report highlights include:
- Both the iOS and Android app market are incredibly fragmented when it comes to developers. Among the top 50 free apps, 92 percent of iOS apps and 66 percent of Android apps are created by unique developers.
- Gaming is the most popular app category overall, making up 50 percent of the top iOS apps and 20 percent of the top Android apps. Gaming also represents the category that has the most access to sensitive user data.
- 96 percent of iOS apps and 84 percent of Android apps have the ability to access sensitive information (ad networks and/or analytics, contact information, calendar details, or location) from the device.
- While gaming apps tend to have more access to sensitive information, a vast majority of business apps used for business, healthcare, and finance also have visibility into that information.
“As employees bring their own smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices into the workplace, they’re introducing new security risks to the enterprise,” said Domingo Guerra, president and co-founder of Appthority.
“IT departments used to control technologies used at work. But now, employees are bringing apps from various developers with access to all kinds of data on mobile devices, including business and personal information.
With our App Reputation Report, we’re showing the potential vulnerabilities behind the most popular apps. We want to help put IT back in control of securing company data.”
Wednesday, July 25th, 2012
Business leaders see the consumerization of IT – including greater employee input in IT provision, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives and workplace flexibility – as a way to generate additional employee productivity and loyalty.
However, while there is growing awareness among organizations that greater flexibility in employee technology choices can enhance productivity, the research also shows that organizations are still grappling with the security challenges and threats this can present.
So say findings from a multi-year research effort on “The Evolving Workforce” by Dell and Intel, which includes feedback from 8,360 workers worldwide and 29 interviews with global experts and senior business leaders.
With a shift towards increased technology choice and mobility occurring over the past three to five years, companies today are striving to better understand the value of creating IT infrastructures which support digitally savvy workers who do not adhere to 9 to 5 routines.
By increasing technology choices for the workforce, employees are able to select solutions that suit their preferences and therefore optimize their outputs. But as the report outlines, greater choice in technology and IT decisions gives rise to concerns around established workplace security protocols, namely security risks such as hacking and data loss.
“With today’s increasingly tech-savvy workforce and outcome-driven employees, companies have everything to gain from fully embracing the IT consumerization and mobility trend that is redefining the workplace,” said Adriana Karaboutis, CIO, Dell.
“Companies are realizing that by enabling employees to work from a location of their choice using their preferred technology, they are taking one of the single most important steps in motivating business productivity.”
Among the key findings of the report are:
- Technology choice leads to productivity: there is a growing awareness in the business community that companies can benefit from increased workforce productivity by allowing employees to have some level of choice in what technology they use and the degree of mobility they have. Depending on the individual organization’s circumstances, clear parameters around levels of choice need to be established. It is then that business leaders can better see how technology catered to individual working styles can create efficiency gains and optimize results.
- Productivity vs. traditional business concerns: companies are clearly trying to determine whether any increased productivity generated from greater technology choice among employees outweighs the associated risks. There is consensus among business leaders that the use of personal devices in the workplace exposes the company to increased security risks and potential data mismanagement. As well as the challenge of measuring productivity levels accurately, businesses are faced with the obstacle of “knowing what data is where and if it’s properly protected.”
- Changing attitude towards mobility: business leaders accept that the arrival of tablets, smartphones and cloud computing creates the need for companies to challenge themselves to be more mobile-led. Many experts believe that the convergence of applications across devices will foster an even more mobile dependent workforce in the future, meaning that businesses wanting to be more productive must first address legacy concerns in order to be mobile-ready.
- Employee transparency: the issue of transparency with employees regarding IT decisions that affect them presents a challenge for management, with business leaders noting that if any aspects of a company’s IT consumerization policy are hidden from employee view, they may backfire. They agree that being transparent with employees helps build trust and goes a long way in harnessing the productivity that businesses seek from new technologies and devices.
- Strategic innovation: in order to stay relevant in a fiercely competitive market and make strategic decisions about operational efficiency, most expert commentators believe that businesses should adopt a smarter, more mobile-centric and integrated approach to IT. This requires businesses to embrace the consumerization of IT with a considered approach and an open mind, working with technology partners to develop tailored solutions that meet the individual requirements of both the organization and employee.
Wednesday, May 16th, 2012
Many of us use our own smartphones, tablets and laptops for both work and personal use – which a majority of IT managers believe is a good thing, even though it makes them nervous.
Over 80 per cent of IT managers think that enterprises with a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy hold a competitive advantage over other organizations, according to research commissioned by BT.
The research, which surveyed attitudes towards employees’ use of their own laptops, tablets and smartphones for work, covered 2,000 IT users and IT managers in 11 countries and from a range of sectors.
It suggests that BYOD has arrived — over four in five companies say they already allow BYOD or will do so within the next 24 months and sixty per cent of employees claim they are already allowed to connect personally-owned devices to the corporate network.
The study reveals that both employees and decision makers are positive about the opportunities presented by the growing use of personal devices on corporate networks.
Sixty-four per cent of IT managers think that having a BYOD policy will enable employees to be more productive.
Forty-eight per cent think it will also allow employees to work more flexibly and 47 per cent think it will enable employees to serve customers better. This sentiment is shared by employees — 42 per cent of employees using their own device for work believe that they are more efficient and productive as a result.
It makes IT managers nervous
Despite these benefits IT managers are nervous. Only one in ten think that all BYOD users recognize the risks and less than one in five believe all users understand the access/permissions related to their mobile devices.
And it appears IT managers are nervous with some justification. Of employees who use their own device for work, one in three see “no risk” in using their own device in a work context and just a quarter recognize the significant risk they pose to company security.
Neil Sutton, vice president, Global Portfolio at BT Global Services said: “There is no denying it. The BYOD genie is out of the bottle, bringing with it unprecedented opportunities for enterprises but also new threats. The new perimeter is everywhere, defined by employee-owned devices, clouds, and extranets. The risk of abuse and attack has multiplied along with this massive expansion.
“To meet these challenges head-on, enterprises need to have a clear policy, a combination of the right tools to implement it, the trust with which to deliver it to employees and the processes in the business that everyone understands and buys into.
“IT security has always been about a blend of people, policy, process and technology, and the right blend is even more critical in a BYOD world. Rather than being perceived as a barrier to agility or flexibility, security can act as an enabler which improves an organization’s ability to adapt to the BYOD trend.”
Thirty-nine per cent of enterprises have experienced a security breach due to employees bringing in unauthorised devices — most commonly in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and pharmaceuticals sectors. More than four out of five (83 per cent) of IT decision makers believe that putting 24/7 access to corporate systems into the hands of an increasingly mobile workforce is now the main threat to corporate IT security.
Sutton added: “So while pressure to allow BYOD is high, IT decision-makers need to tackle a range of issues before they feel able to introduce a BYOD policy. Security is the highest priority, with 73 per cent of IT managers stating that they first had to overcome the security challenges of BYOD.
“That’s the thinking behind BT Assure. We work with our customers to navigate the complexity and ensure they have appropriate policies, procedures, solutions in place to take advantage of the benefits presented by BYOD without compromising security.”
Wednesday, May 9th, 2012
The vast majority of people are using mobile technology today that they do not necessarily trust, according to Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR) Trusted Mobility Index.
The global survey of 4,037 mobile device users and IT decision-makers found mobile technology adoption is outpacing confidence.
According to the survey, individuals are using more mobile devices, applications, services and networks than ever before and they are accessing critical personal and professional information while “on the go.”
Trust uncertain despite growth
Despite this growth, consumer trust is uncertain.
Just 15 percent of respondents have a great deal of confidence in the security of their mobile devices and services, while the vast majority — 63 percent — are at a crossroads and simply do not know if they should trust that their mobile experiences are secure.
This lack of consumer confidence puts mobile adoption at risk.
The survey found that all it would take is a single security vulnerability — real or perceived — for people to change their mobile behaviors or abandon certain mobile services altogether.
The majority of people (71 percent) said they would stop using critical services like online banking (78 percent), that they would no longer send private communications (57 percent) and they would stop viewing medical (54 percent) or work-related information (52 percent).
According to the survey, mobile security is an important issue that affects everyone — not just corporations — and many have a part to play in building more trusted mobile experiences.
“The mobile revolution is unleashing massive opportunities, but our research shows we are at a critical turning point,” said Nawaf Bitar, senior vice president, Security Business unit, Juniper Networks.
“The speed and scale at which mobile innovations can have a positive impact on society will depend on the industry’s ability to address new security vulnerabilities before they undermine people’s sense of safety. We must act now to protect and preserve trust in mobility.”
Additional Key Findings Include:
A Complex and Confusing Mobile Landscape
- Mobile users worldwide own an average of three Internet-connected devices, while nearly one in five people (18 percent) own five or more devices.
- Three-quarters (76 percent) of mobile users access their banking or personal medical information while on the go, while 89 percent of respondents who use their personal devices for business purposes, say they access sensitive work information.
- Further, the trend toward a “bring your own device” (BYOD) enterprise is creating new concerns for IT leaders, with nearly half of all respondents using their personal device for work (41 percent) without permission from their company.
Key Stakeholders in Trust
- Mobile users rank network security (69 percent) and network reliability (45 percent) as the top two drivers of trust in their mobile devices, followed by device security (43 percent).
- The majority of mobile device users (63 percent) hold service providers most responsible for protecting their sensitive data, followed by device manufacturers (38 percent) and software security providers (34 percent).
- For advice on mobile security, people look to industry security experts (20 percent), service providers (14 percent), software security providers (13 percent) and device manufacturers (10 percent).
Tuesday, May 8th, 2012
Most technology executives aren’t yet allowing employees to access the company network using their personal smartphones and other technology tools, a concept known as “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD), a new Robert Half Technology survey shows.
Only one-third (33 percent) of chief information officers (CIOs) interviewed said employees can access their companies’ corporate networks using their personal smartphones, tablets, computers or other devices.
The national survey was developed by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of information technology professionals on a project and full-time basis, and conducted by an independent research firm. The survey is based on more than 1,400 telephone interviews with CIOs from a random sample of U.S. companies with 100 or more employees.
CIOs were asked, “Do you allow employees access to your corporate networks via personal laptops, smartphones or tablets?“ Their responses:
The tide may turn
Among the CIOs whose firms do allow workers to access the company network using their own equipment, 66 percent said their firms offer limited technical support to these individuals, and 28 percent offer full support. Six percent offer no support.
“Companies are balancing the desire to provide flexibility to employees with potential security risks, as well as logistical issues such as providing support for non-standard devices,” said John Reed, senior executive director of Robert Half Technology.
Reed noted that although most CIOs surveyed don’t currently allow employees to use their personal devices to access company networks, the tide may soon turn, particularly with the rise in telecommuting and remote work arrangements.
“Professionals increasingly want to stay connected while using their device of choice for both work and personal communication,” he said. “Companies recognize this and are actively looking for secure solutions.”
Thursday, April 26th, 2012
Apple continues to dominate smartphone and tablet activations among enterprise users.
Apple’s iPhone 4S hit a record high number of activations for the first quarter of 2012, claiming the number one device spot overall, with 37 percent of all activations (four times that of any other device).
So says the quarterly device activation report for the first quarter of 2012. The full report from Good Technology provides a breakdown of smartphone and tablet devices activated amongst Good’s enterprise customers, which include eight of the top 10 financial institutions, seven of the top 10 healthcare organizations, half of the Fortune 100, and companies from every major industry.
The iPad 2 claimed the second spot overall, with 17.7 percent of activations for the quarter. With less than one month on the market, the new iPad, released in March 2012, rocketed to the number four spot with 4.3 percent of all activations for the quarter, and an impressive 12.1 percent of activations in March alone.
We wonder here at the TechJournal if the breakage issue disclosed by Consumer Reports (the new iPads were severely damaged by a waist high fall) will eventually be a problem if they are used as an Enterprise mobile device? On the other hand, its dictation feature could certainly be useful in an Enterprise setting.
Amongst Android devices, the Motorola Droid took the top spot, with 1.6 percent of all activations, making it the seventh most popular device for the quarter. Overall, Android smartphones represented 26.1 percent of all activations for the quarter, while Android tablets came in at 2.7 percent.
BYOD and Tablets Drive Substantial Year-over-Year and Quarter-over-Quarter Activation Growth for Good
The number of Good customers deploying iOS and/or Android devices grew by more than 50 percent over the past 12 months, while the average Good customer deployment size more than doubled over the same period.
Even more impressive, in Q1 2012 alone, Good’s activations grew by 50 percent over Q4 2011, and were nearly double the two previous quarters combined.
“BYOD smartphones and tablets combined with proactive, company-owned iPad deployments are driving rapid growth both the size and number of new deployments amongst our customers,” said John Herrema, Good Technology’s SVP of Corporate Strategy.
“This includes significant growth in the number of Good users who have both a smartphone and a tablet, with the iPhone 4S and iPad 2 as the most frequently occurring combination.”
Enterprise Users Driving Tablet Adoption
A recent Gartner press release forecasts 118.9 million tablets will be sold this year. Good found that iPads collectively represented roughly 97.3 percent of its tablet activations for Q1 2012.
Apple’s continued growth is not only being driven by consumers and the overall BYOD trend, but also by proactive enterprise deployment of iPads.
Apple’s iPhones and iPads remain the clear choice amongst end users when it comes to both BYOD and large company-driven deployments in verticals such as Financial Services, Business and Professional Services, Life Sciences and Healthcare.
Life Sciences witnessed the highest rate of growth in the quarter for iPad net activations by industry, steadily increasing from less than three percent in October 2011 to nearly 14 percent in January 2012.
This growth mirrors anecdotal data around proactive iPad deployments to sales forces in that industry, most notably among Pharmaceutical and Biotech companies.
“With Windows 8, we expect more competition for Apple and the iPad in the enterprise tablet space, especially for proactive, company-owned device deployments,” said John Herrema, Good Technology’s SVP Corporate Strategy.
“On the smartphone side, we just released support for Windows Phone 7.5 last week and it will be interesting to see how it performs over the coming quarters.”
Here at the Techjournal we’ve seen numerous reports of other new tablets from makers that include Google, Samsung, and others likely to challenge Apple over the long term, especially with less expensive models and different form factors.