Policy education and user acceptance critical in enterprise mobility

The TechFire panel addresses audience questions (Image: Mediateam)

16 November 2015

While predictions about the future of enterprise mobility and services are a little hard to make, the panel at the latest TechFire session were all in agreement that the future will be multi-operating system and security needs to be all encompassing.

At the recent event on enterprise mobility management (EMM), the TechFire audience heard how mobility must start with a policy, which facilitates the development of a strategy and then goes into implementation via apps, services and finally smart connected devices (SCD).

A comment from the audience outlined how, through experience, the value of user educated was learned. User education and acceptance of mobility policy is critical, said the attendee. User education is worth doing to ensure smooth adoption and willing compliance. When users see the sense of the measures outlined in the policy, they are more willing to comply.

Paul Conaty, solutions architect, CWSI, agreed with the insight, adding that it is a critical part of the implementation of a mobility strategy.

Regarding security in mobile applications, a project manager who is increasingly dealing with mobile application development, commented that security is still something of an afterthought and needs to be included earlier in the development cycle.

While the panel agreed, most also pointed out that this message is getting out and attitudes are changing. David Cahill, security strategy and architecture manager, AIB, said that it within the financial sector, it cannot be done any other way now.

A question from the audience asked whether web apps were any different in terms of security and mobile policy enforcement. Conaty of CWSI said that this was not really the case, as many mobile apps are essentially browser-based services that skin a service or feed from the Web. Most EMM solutions can deal with this, but they need to be addressed at the network layer for effective management. Conor Flynn, CEO, Information Security Assurance Services, agreed and also highlighted a key trend in enterprise mobility.

Flynn said that in the future, security in mobility will be all encompassing, bringing together device control, data protection and user and traffic monitoring. With many solutions currently, these are disparate functions, but increasingly, they will be unified as simply mobile security.

Another question from the audience asked about the ability to vet apps for an enterprise app store from within an EMM solutiuon.

Conaty said that this is already available, but is offered by very few vendors and where it is, it can be limited. Appthority is one such solution.

When asked to look to the future of enterprise mobility, the panel agreed on both the difficulty in predicting new SCDs due the rapid pace of technological development in the area, and applications and services. However, all were agreed on a multi-operating system future.

Raj Mallempati, global lead for marketing, MobileIron, said that while major strides had been made by both iOS and Android in terms of management for enterprise, Windows Mobile must be prepared for.

Mallempati said that while Windows Mobile adoption is currently low, its recent development has made it enterprise ready and thus will see it take further market share and so organisations need to be ready for it.

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