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Respecting what's "yours" and protecting what's "ours" in mobile enterprises

Companies are walking a tricky line between managing what's "yours" and "ours" in their efforts to protect corporate data on mobile devices.

Companies are walking a tricky line between managing what's "yours" and "ours" in their efforts to protect corporate data on mobile devices. Next generation mobility management tools are what are needed.

"With mobile related threats increasing and posing increasing risk to corporate data, companies should have in place a robust mobility management solution. With this comes a dilemma; how to secure corporate data generated, stored and shared on mobile devices while respecting employees' privacy and personal content," says Michael Morton, mobile security expert at Securicom.

A well-constructed security policy around the use of mobile devices for business-related purposes is an obvious and essential foundation. This helps to ensure that the company's security requirements are considered and detailed while at the same time acknowledging employees' right to privacy.

The policy must formally define the parameters around the usage of mobile devices for work and stipulate the security requirements for each type of mobile device that is connected to the corporate network. This could include, amongst other things, the way that passwords are configured, prohibit specific types of applications from being installed on the device, and the encryption of data stored on devices.

A comprehensive mobility management solution will provide IT with the tools and a centralized console for creating policies and rules, enforcing them, and deploying them securely to devices across the enterprise.

Securicom's new Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) platform enables the provision and management of devices throughout their lifecycle. Security policies can be set in a few simple steps, and users can also easily and quickly self-enroll. Securicom EMM caters for both corporate owned policies and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) scenarios that have traditionally been even trickier for companies to control and secure.

"With our new, cloud based EMM platform, there is clear separation of private and corporate data to ensure that organisations' security requirements are met while affording end users their privacy. Only corporate data is managed.

"This means that employees don't have to worry about IT wiping their device data, tracking their devices, or having any view into them. This solves the dilemma for businesses that want to protect corporate information on or accessed by mobile devices while employees don't feel like they are being spied on," explains Morton.

In addition to a sound mobility management solution, control technologies should be put in place to allow or disallow access to the corporate network based on the user and device credentials. With an effective mobility management solution and Network Access Control technology, companies can block certain risky functions on employees' devices from connecting to the network when they enter the geo-parameter of the network. The functionality is restored once the device moves out of that parameter.

"With appropriate technologies in place, companies can maintain the important balance between protecting their data while respecting their employees' personal information, even in a BYOD set up. There doesn't have to be a compromise," says Morton.

Securicom EMM is a locally hosted, cloud based mobility security and management platform specifically designed for enterprise customers in Africa. Powered by the world leading IBM MobileFirst Protect, the leader in secure enterprise mobility, Securicom EMM provides enterprise-grade, POPI-compliant, security as a service. It is an encompassing mobility management solution that promises 99.8% uptime SLA and industry leading support infrastructure backing it up.

The solution addresses a number of pain points in the mobile environment including application management and security; device management; content management; secure email management; document management; browser management; expense management, and threat management.

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