Thanks to the growing proliferation of tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices in critical enterprise environments, maintaining a secure environment for sensitive corporate data has become one of the most pressing challenges for an IT / telecom team to tackle. While tablets are a convenient way for employees to access corporate e-mail, corporate networks and corporate data while on the road, they also pose several security risks:
- A possible entry point for malicious activity that could severely compromise data security
- The inadvertent duplication of sensitive corporate data on a remote device outside of corporate firewalls and monitoring services
- The ability to take recording devices into unauthorized areas (do you include tablets in the mix with cameras and cell phones
Dealing with the transfer and management of sensitive and confidential data requires a security policy that effectively safeguards data while allowing normal collaboration between authorized parties. Mobile device management (MDM) is the key to minimizing the security risks associated with use of these innovative, yet complex tablets.
The biggest risk of utilizing mobile devices such as tablets involves the possibility of lost or stolen data, especially during the transfer process. Any tablet or other mobile device should allow for the implementation of IT management controls that allow IT teams to closely monitor and control the flow of data from one device to the next. When deemed necessary by IT personnel, management policies can be deployed via third-party mobile device management software or other means to restrict or disable connectivity to ports and Wi-Fi, 3G or LTE capabilities. Mobile device management profiles should be created to fit with the nature of both the data on the device and the work performed by said mobile device.
Wireless device security plays an important part in minimizing security risks involving enterprise tablets and other mobile devices. Insuring that your wireless security and proper use policy is robust and secure enough to handle malicious attacks, improper use and other security breaches should be a priority. Your corporate wireless policy needs to be in place and published prior to introducing mobile devices into the enterprise environment. Even with a strong policy, mobile device management tools and usage collection and tracking systems in place, any weakness within this wireless ecosystem can compromise security and expose the company to risk and liability issues.
No matter the route taken to insure compliance with desired security levels, MDM solutions must feature a wide range of management features, the ability to create custom-tailored management policies with relative ease and an expedient and effortless process for deploying security policies across target environments. IT teams have the option of using OTA (over the air) push technologies to deploy the mobile device management app or the end users can doanload most MDM apps via the device's OS app store (The Apple Store, Android Market, etc).
MDM tools are available for more comprehensive distribution options that further enhance the deployment process. These tools also provide a singular user experience for all clients, regardless of the type of mobile device they’re using. Security policies can be easily updated within the MDM tool set, eliminating concerns that could arise from manual distribution and updating. Mobile device management tools can mitigate complications brought on by employees bringing in their own mobile devices (BYOD or Bring Your Own Device) into the workplace.
An comprehensive wireless management policy, combined with sensible wireless device security can prevent sensitive and confidential data from ending up in the wrong hands. In addition, malicious use and unauthorized access attempts are minimized with the deployment of strong mobile device management solutions and customized user profiles. The constant evolution of tablet and smartphone technology poses a critical challenge to IT departments, but a strong game plan for maintaining and enhancing device security can help these departments stay on top of an ever-changing enterprise environment.