As time passes, enterprise mobility continues to become more complex. Cybersecurity threats are growing more advanced with each passing day, so how is mobile security evolving and changing to keep sensitive program data safe?In recent years, mobile security software has undergone multiple transformations to minimize the damage done by today’s threats. What started as Mobile Device Management (MDM) has rapidly become something else entirely. Here’s how mobile security has changed and what it will look like very soon:
A Look Back
When smartphones began showing up at work a decade ago, it didn’t take businesses much time to discover out how potentially dangerous these devices could be. Without a reliable solution in place, each employee’s phone was an easy target for hackers. Companies needed software capable of remotely configuring and controlling device security settings in a way that didn’t disrupt workforce productivity.
MDM was the answer. With this technology, mobility programs could secure employee device access to sensitive internal networks and resources . This effectively restricted sensitive data access to only those users who absolutely needed it, reducing the risk of data breaches and losses.
It wasn’t long, however, before enterprises discovered MDM was a somewhat limited security solution. While it locked down mobile devices, the software was ultimately incapable of securing all mobility program aspects. For example, if an organization needed to delete their application data off a user’s device, there was no way to protect stored personal data; all application data had to be wiped.
Equipment manufacturers and a fundamental shift in the mobile device usage eventually rendered standalone MDMs obsolete. As smartphones increased in popularity, more employees began relying on multiple mobile devices to get work done. Additionally, device makers started incorporating MDM software features into their stock devices, causing mobile security to shift away from physical device security and toward managing data across multiple devices.
A Shift in Mobile Security
The next step was Managed Mobility Services (MMS). This mobile security solution expanded Information Technology’s (IT’s) controls beyond the device level with data loss prevention tools, creating a comprehensive layer of program protection.
MMS software bundled traditional MDM features with others like Mobile Application Management (MAM), Mobile Content Management (MCM), and Mobile Information Management (MIM) to assemble this all-in-one innovation. By securing all facets of a mobile program, EMM simplified IT’s support burden and enabled enterprises to refocus resources on more mission-critical tasks.
In 2015, the release of Windows 10 turned the mobile security industry on its head once again. Companies uncovered tremendous value in being able to manage desktop computers and legacy technologies like mobile devices.
This led to the current trend of convergence. Rather than employ multiple teams and a disjointed network of different systems to manage business technology, companies began seeking single-platform solutions with one-size-fits-all security software. While MMS works for mobile devices, the same can’t be said for some legacy technologies—that means more changes.
The Future Starts Today
Moving forward, organizations will migrate toward Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) because it allows IT to manage all device types and operating systems regardless of use case. No matter where employees access data from or how they access it, they’ll share an identical software experience and enjoy extensive digital safeguards.
With UEM, devices like MacBooks (that are EMM-compatible) and Surface Pro tablets (that can connect to wireless mobile networks) can now be managed alongside smartphones and IoT devices.
While it’s still early, initial feedback from the organizations leveraging UEM is encouraging. Mobility programs have been able to increase user adoption, engagement, and productivity while simultaneously cutting device management costs by 30% or more.
If the past is any indication of what the future holds, there will undoubtedly be more mobile security changes to come. Keeping up with all the enterprise mobility changes and developments is a full-time job; the safest option is to let an expert partner help protect your program so you can get back to business.