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FCW : February 2015
ing MDM platforms to provide asset management and security functionality across a variety of mobile devices. Four MDM vendors are at the forefront in the federal market: MobileIron, AirWatch, Fiberlink and XenMobile. AirWatch is owned by VMware, Fiberlink is owned by IBM, and XenMobile is owned by Citrix. MDM platforms are helping agencies get their mobile devices under control, Salerno said. “We’ve now moved into applications as the main risk factor. We’re looking at how those applications are getting to those devices.” For example, DISA chose MobileIron as its MDM plat- form and secure mobile app store. A DISA official told FCW that 6,700 unclassified mobile devices were currently under management. Suder said DISA’s rollout of MDM is a step in the right direction but is taking longer than anticipated. “DISA is having trouble getting devices certified for the MDM,” Suder said, adding that other military agen- cies are looking at getting MDM platforms of their own. “The Navy is looking at an MDM of their own. The Air Force is kicking the tires on MDM. The Marine Corps is looking to go through a carrier.” Coapstick said the DISA MDM deployment is behind schedule because “they are starting to see some of the challenges with mobility and how they do things from a strategy, policy and implementation perspective.... For any large organization, it becomes a big change manage- ment problem.” And Salerno noted that, while “most of the MDMs, and in turn a lot of the management applications, are now cross-platform...a homogenous environment is going to work a little more smoothly across the board.” USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, for example, has standardized on iPads and MobileIron. Approximately 3,000 NASS employees use iPads to sur- vey and report on agricultural data nationwide. Last year, USDA selected MobileIron to help secure its mobile devices, data and apps. As an MDM solution, MobileIron provides secure email, automatic device con- figuration, certificate-based security and remote wipe for lost or stolen devices. The software separates business and personal data, and allows an enterprise to wipe all corporate data off the device when an employee leaves. On the horizon: App security The mobile security debate is expected to shift focus in 2015 and beyond from devices to applications. This shift comes at a time when mobile app development is skyrocketing; IDC predicts that enterprises will develop twice as many mobile apps in 2015 as a year earlier. One sign of this issue’s importance is that the National Institute of Standards and Technology has drafted guide- lines to help agencies test for vulnerabilities in mobile applications. Agencies are starting to consider mobile app security with targeted products from such vendors as Barracuda, Appthority and Lookout as well as mobile application management features on MDM platforms. As Lookout’s Vice President for Federal Systems Bob Stevens told FCW, “MDM is really good at policy and policy enforcement. But who informs those policies?” Coapstick said that the biggest challenge in mobile security is that mobile apps are built using a different paradigm than applications built for PCs. “Mobility isn’t always about the consumption of data in a tablet factor. It’s about providing data that relates to a loca- tion or what I’m doing, what we like to call hyper contextual. It’s a fundamentally different experience,” Coapstick said. “It’s going to take a security posture and a paradigm shift to think beyond the mobile device,” Coapstick said. “Agencies need to really think about how these devices are being used and how they are employed in the trans- action because that’s what it’s really about. Users want to access the right information right now and right here.” Mobility experts say agencies need to think more about the security of data and apps on devices than worrying about the devices themselves. “App security is the next frontier,” Suder said. “An agency has to develop some kind of risk profile of what they can accept in their apps. They can’t lock down every- thing, or nobody can do their job.” n Agencies need to really think about how these devices are being used and how they are employed in the transaction because that’s what it’s really about. Users want to access the right information right now and right here. — Bryan Coapstick, HP Enterprise Services February 2015 FCW.COM 3 0215fcw_010a-010c.indd 3 1/28/15 2:42 PM
March 15, 2015