Mobile Device Management Programs Remove Burden from IT
December 11, 2012
By Susan J. Campbell
, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Today’s mobile workforce is driving the need for changes in mobile device management. While many companies are permitting their employees to work remotely, allowing multiple portable devices to access enterprise networks can pose some serious security challenges.
Before mobility, employees were provided with homogenous equipment and it was much easier to control cyber threats. The BYOD policy, however, not only means that incongruent technologies will be accessing the network, but workers are also using a variety of different types of devices such as tablets, smartphones, etc., on a daily basis.
According to this InformationWeek report, these changes have kept IT departments very busy trying to instill workable mobile device management polices while also adapting current monitoring systems, which weren’t designed for such applications. Other times IT has had to reconcile a lack of back-end control. Those working in the field have struggled, too. The extra security precautions can take a toll on efficiency and may still leave the company vulnerable to threats.
Programs like Centrify’s DirectControl for SaaS (News - Alert) aims to minimize mobile device management challenges. The new platform utilizes Active Directory, an application created by Microsoft over 10 years ago, which gives IT professionals a single sign-on (SSO) for governing cloud services. AD makes it easier for IT to grant and limit access to private data and has been a security staple for Windows software as well as UNIX, Linux, and OS X.
Traditionally, SaaS has required users to have their own unique user names and passwords for separate services. With DirectControl for SaaS, however, the management of user identities is centralized and simple as one user name and password can be applied to a variety of different apps. Current AD infrastructure does not need to be altered to accommodate mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
Additionally, DirectControl for SaaS introduces automated user functions, which shift a portion of the mobile device management burden from IT as employees can now complete many jobs on their own.
One final benefit of DirectControl for SaaS is the “zero” sign-in option. Smartphones can be particularly challenging to type on, and completing multiple sign-ins can eat valuable time and drain productivity. The advantage of the “zero” sign-in option is that once the device is unlocked, all users apps are available for use without the keying of additional security codes.
MobileIron has also responded with mobile device management software designed to meet the needs of today’s mobile workforce. The MobileIron Virtual Smartphone Platform is the first solution to combine data-driven mobile device management with real-time wireless cost control. The company’s approach is simple – remove the headache that IT, finance personnel and end-users face in managing smartphone data by relocating it to the cloud.
MobileIron’s robust platform represents a new model for mobile device oversight and is the first solution that integrates data-driven control of portable devices with instantaneous cost management functions. It can accommodate multiple platforms such as Android (News - Alert) and iOS and helps eliminate international roaming charges and pricey mobile support fees.
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Edited by Jamie Epstein