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Enterprise Mobility & Collaboration

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U nified communications (UC), collaboration and mobile technology are in- creasingly one and the same thing. Suppliers certainly agree for when even large enterprise technology behemoths, such as IBM, Oracle and SAP, start using the language of cloud, collaboration and small business units, and when desktop giant Microsoft bets Windows 10 on a mobile, collaborative future incorporating Skype for Busi - ness, then we can assume computing has left the corporate desktop for good. This has changed the enterprise itself. For some organisations, "the office" is now a mindset and set of shared practices, rather than a place that people travel to. We used to talk of a work-life balance, but now it's more a case of subtle and constant integra - tion. However, the fact that the once clear boundary between work and play is blurring means that security is becoming more complex in the al - ways-on mobile world. Indeed, there is a sense that our legacy concept of "the enterprise", with its 1990s roots in client-server computing, is breaking apart in the cloud. The upside is increased collabora - tion, but when so much in commu- nications is becoming a stream of personal choices rather than a clearly defined space, this poses a data securi- ty challenge, both for the organisation and for its customers, stakeholders and employees. For these reasons, se- curity must primarily be about policy, common sense, good practice and business goals; supportive technology comes second. Square one of the mobile UC securi - ty game is recognising that corporate data still belongs to the core organisa- tion and not to the individual. It needs to be secured centrally and then ac- cessed remotely by well-managed, rig- orously enforced authentication. Strong authentication and access control are a must and yet research consistently shows that "123456" and "password" or "Passw0rd" are still the most common passwords found online. Also, storing logins and pass - words locally is only convenient when the device is in your possession; if it's stolen or lost, any still-active sessions gift the finder an open door into the organisation. Thanks to bring your own device (BYOD) schemes, people's own choice of mobile phone or tablet is often the one they use for work too, so it's impor - tant to emphasise that the organisa- tion's BYOD and data security policies don't just apply in the office during traditional work hours. Dispersed organisations of remote, mobile, flexible workers need to be held together by a shared mission, clear data-protection policies and common technologies, so not down - loading apps independently of the IT team is core to the principle of UC – it's called unified communications for a reason. Wrapped up in all this is the growth of so-called "shadow IT ", as employ - ees and sometimes departments mix and match their own technologies in- formally. The temptation is clear as a world of new mobile apps and cloud platforms is out there, each promis- ing to make the employee's job easier. But any one of them might have been rushed to market and so be full of bugs or exploitable weaknesses. Some might even be malware. However, business and IT profession - als should see the desire to be creative as an advantage, signalling employees are enthusiastic and keen to do their jobs. So put together a suite of ap - proved, standards-based tools that can be centrally managed and secured. Mobile UC is also about common sense. Proactively managing and changing passwords is just one sen - sible measure, as is logging out of en- terprise applications if your device is used by other people. Other security practices cover every- day behaviour because fallible human beings are always the biggest weak- ness when it comes to data security. For example, don't take part in private video-conferences or virtual meetings in public places, such as on trains, in cafés or in departure lounges. Anyone could be listening or taking notes, from journalists to customers, inves - tors or competitors. Similarly, don't use free public wi-fi hotspots in cafés, hotels or even con- ference centres when engaged in col- laborative business; use them at your own risk, not at your organisation's. That tempting password-free hotspot might be a community resource, but equally it might be someone in the next room, scraping all the data from your device. Use the official channels. For employers and digital-native em - ployees, who have never known a world without mobiles and cloud platforms, security has a cultural dimension too. The millennial culture of openness, downloading, peer-to-peer sharing and constant communication may run counter to some organisations' aims, not to mention their responsibilities to customers and their regulatory ob - ligations. Also, be aware that buying a collabora- tion tool doesn't make you a collabora- tive organisation. To benefit from such tools demands a shift of culture, togeth- er with a supportive management team that isn't threatened by flatter, less hier- archical workflows. As ever with IT, buy technologies to support business goals, not the other way around. MOBILE SECURITY CHRIS MIDDLETON Security must primarily be about policy, common sense, good practice and business goals; supportive technology comes second Keeping confidential data secure in the mobile age With the growth in mobile technology comes increased concern over data security on the move, but best-practice strategies can safeguard confidential corporate information MOBILE DEVICE SECURITY MARKET Source: Infonetics Research 2014 $3.4bn 2018 $1.3bn 2013 18 | ENTERPRISE MOBILITY & COLLABORATION 04 / 08 / 2015 | RACONTEUR raconteur.net

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