Since mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones contain their own native IT security measures, some business leaders and IT managers question the need for the additional security that can be provided by a mobile data management system. The simple answer to this question is that mobile data management programs can serve to both enforce and provision the native security present on handheld devices. A more nuanced answer, however, would point out that MDM products could produce an "integrated security" environment in which mobile devices become not only more secure, but also far more useful to the organization.
Smartphones, of course, almost universally contain sophisticated messaging applications, but in a BYOD environment, these native apps often make no effort to distinguish between personal and organizational data. One common protocol for messaging in the business environment is EAS (Exchange ActiveSync), which allows devices to synchronize messages, contacts, and even attachments in a cloud computing environment. Phones, however, vary in their ability to interact securely with the business network while using EAS.
Mobile data management can provide a solution to this challenge, providing non-native messaging applications that can safely interact with SMB information resources without opening up security holes. Even better, from an organization’s standpoint, mobile data management programs make it possible for IT support staff to remove a device from the network when such action is called for and to provision it with resources on an as-needed basis.
Unfortunately, for the SMB considering adopting a BYOD policy, not all mobile devices in use today support encryption. This alone should be cause for serious consideration of a mobile data management system in which business information resources, such as documents, are placed in encrypted containers whenever they are downloaded onto a device.
Improved content management also means that business and personal data on a device can be separated more effectively. This is essential because it allows for a ‘remote wipe’ function to be far more effective. Employees, after all, are hardly likely to want to participate in a BYOD environment when a remote wipe could cause much of their personal information to be lost. When workers are confident that IT support for their mobile devices will improve their work lives without impinging on their personal lives, they are far more likely to embrace a new technological paradigm enthusiastically.
An Integrated Firewall
Smartphones generally do not include a firewall. Mobile data management agents can remedy this lack, enforcing firewall capacities on all devices connected to the organization's network.
One of the best ways to install and maintain a mobile data management system is to adopt an IT managed programs model in which an IT company representative provides ongoing support, maintence, and service.