Mobile Security: Perpetual Work in Progress



The poet Robert Browning wrote that “a man’s reach should exceed his grasp”.

That 19th century wisdom has inspired countless individuals and organizations to accomplish great things by striving to achieve goals and surmount obstacles they were told were unachievable or insurmountable.

Business-Transforming Mobility

Even if they don’t know it, hundreds of businesses and organizations around the globe are revving up to put Browning’s words into action.  Organizations of all sizes are poised to dramatically accelerate their business mobilization initiatives. These activities promise to revolutionize businesses – and in some cases entire industries – by opening up core business processes to the opportunities that mobility presents.

With opportunity, though, comes risk.

A real danger exists that business leaders, tunnel visioning on the transformational potential of enterprise mobility, will take shortcuts with security. Survey after survey shows that the productivity improving properties of enterprise mobility are the top priorities of business leaders. It is imperative that in their rush to reap the benefits of mobility they do not inadvertently sacrifice security at the altar of business enablement.

Working without a Net

While organizations pushing the productivity envelope of enterprise mobility should continue to take Browning’s advice to heart, they must also recognize that overreaching without the protection provided by an end-to-end mobile security net can result in calamity. The reality is that “good” security isn’t good enough to mitigate the increased exposure to data breaches, as well as compliance and privacy violations, that the next-generation of enterprise mobility will bring.

Security is the backbone of enterprise mobility. Late-to-market enterprise mobility management (EMM) solutions offer only cursory security capabilities. They lack the foundation to enable organizations to introduce user-pleasing and business-transforming mobility advancements without risking the exposure of data to loss or attack.

Ultimate Security

Over the past 15 years, BlackBerry has invested billions and amassed an industry-leading parcel of patents and certifications in pursuit of delivering the ultimate mobile security.  BlackBerry understands that as long as electronic commerce and communications are subject to human error – or mischief – the complete elimination of all security vulnerabilities will remain a theoretical goal. That doesn’t mean that organizations of all sizes, especially those operating in regulated industries, such as the public sector, financial services and healthcare, shouldn’t strive for ironclad protection of their corporate assets.

(As of February 2015, BlackBerry holds 70+ security certifications and approvals from governments.)

An axiom for businesses to live by is that security cannot be an afterthought, something bolted on to buttress an unstable foundation. Enterprise mobility is moving at too fast a pace to afford vendors the luxury of playing catch up with security.

Electronic security will always be a work in progress, never to be fully completed. As mobility takes a leading role in the transformation of businesses and organizations, everyone involved in mobile strategy planning must be dedicated to safeguarding the exchange of information between corporate servers and mobile devices.

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About Joe McGarvey

An Enterprise Mobility Strategist at BlackBerry, McGarvey has covered the enterprise and telecommunications industries for more than 20 years as both a journalist and analyst. He is best-known as a long-time principal analyst at leading market research firm Current Analysis. McGarvey has also been an analyst for Heavy Reading and an editor at several leading technology magazines.

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