As mobile devices continue to infiltrate organizations, the demand for secure solutions becomes critical. By 2017, the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and enterprise mobility market is expected to reach upwards of $181 billion. The introduction of these new devices influence the way businesses collaborate, communicate and innovate. In order to maintain their status as a market leader, organizations must stay ahead of the quickly evolving technology trends and develop ways to securely integrate them into day-to-day operations. Here's a breakdown of a few of the mobile trends that are quickly becoming hot topics for 2014:
Predicting the potential risks of wearable technology
According to research firm Juniper, 2014 is the year that wearable technology goes mainstream. Last year, Google launched its highly anticipated glasses and Samsung rolled out a smart watch, while other big tech players including Apple gear up to introduce a whole new breed of wearable tech. On the horizon: smart contact lenses, LED sweaters that can sense your mood and even fingernails rigged with individual radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, allowing the wearer to perform a variety of tasks normally completed with a card.
A recent Fortinet survey, which was conducted across 20 countries and surveyed 3,200 21-32 year old employees, found that 16 percent of respondents agreed that they would use wearable technologies in work or for work purposes as soon as they become available and 33 percent as soon as their price is affordable. Juniper cautions that privacy will be an ongoing issue with wearable tech, as cameras go everywhere – including the workplace. IT teams will face similar challenges and risks as with mobile devices, the most important of which is protecting corporate data.
Stepping up security with a multi-layered approach
As more business processes are extended to mobile, many organizations are finding uses for both mobile device management (MDM) and containerization, either for different deployments or on the same device. Organizations with highly sensitive proprietary content or in strictly regulated industries may prefer the added security that MDM and containerization on the same device provides. A corporate container deployed on a managed device provides an extra barrier to access corporate content. Users are required to enter both a device-level passcode and a container-level passcode, and administrators have both device-level controls and application-level controls that enable app-to-app collaboration with other managed and secure applications within the container.
This approach also creates a sense of segmentation between work and play for end users, bringing a dual-persona feel to managed devices by isolating corporate content inside a secure container. MDM and containerization are often thought of as mutually exclusive security solutions, but today's most innovative organizations are taking a layered approach to security by using the two in conjunction.
Adopting app scanning to protect organizations and end-users
As employees increasingly demand more apps for business, IT administrators must block malicious applications and certify that internal and third-party applications meet their organization's security standards. Administrators need to protect organizations from publicly available malicious applications, risks that come with internal and third-party apps, and address concerns around apps accessing personal data on employee-owned devices. In order to address these concerns, organizations must integrate app scanning into their business platform.
With app scanning, IT administrators can identify common app risks, such as access to privacy settings, insecure network connections, malicious code and more. By scanning the applications, administrators can identify potential privacy, behavior, and design and programming risks. This information gives IT administrators the ability to assess whether an application is safe for business use or blacklist the application if it does not meet the minimum security standard, empowering them to take action and eliminate current and future risks.
When it comes to adopting any new technology, the less time organizations spend worrying about security, the more they can focus on driving core business strategies. Therefore, understanding technology trends and predicting their impact is vital to any organization's mobility strategy.