March 27, 2013

Trends in BYOD | Network Security and Management Are Leading Concerns

Trends in BYOD: Top the List of Security and Management Concerns

The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) revolution has hit the workplace. A Forrester Research study shows that 60% of workers use their personal mobile devices at work – with some organizations reporting that over 75% of devices on their networks are owned by the end-user.

This is why it comes as no surprise that BYOD, especially as it relates to security and network management,  has been one of the industry’s leading conversation starters. Just take a look at a few conversations of note:

The era of static IT infrastructure, characterized by resources and applications deployed in tight silos, has come to an end – replaced by today’s open network of edge access and fleixible, shared resources. But what about the tools used to manage this architecture? Have they kept pace?

The answer comes as a resounding “No,” according to this webinar survey conducted by Zeus Kerravala, the founder and principal analyst with ZK Research. According to the survey, 73% of respondents “feel they can’t monitor the performance of the applications that drive their company’s business.” And without a network management tool that offers a holistic view, the problems associated with managing these virtualized, consumerized and mobilized environments are only going to continue to fester.

What was one of the major themes at Interop?  According Network World, BYOD security and network management is at the forefront of everyone’s mind. Attendees at the conference cited BYOD concerns ranging from policy management to network security.

BYOD is here to stay points out Bill Brenner, managing editor from CSO Security and Risk. According to this case study, Gartner Inc. describes Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs as creating the “single most radical shift in the economics of client computing” since PCs first began invading the workplace.

“With the wide range of capabilities brought by mobile devices, and the myriad ways in which business processes are being reinvented as a result, we are entering a time of tremendous change,” says David Willis, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. “The market for mobile devices is booming and the basic device used in business compared to those used by consumers is converging.”

But as the article also points out, making BYOD initiatives work is not without its own set of unique challenges. As employee and consumer owned device use continues to increase, IT managers and CSOs must implement a balancing act that accounts for both security and usability, all while allocating more tasks to an already overworked IT staff.

According to Juniper Research, employee-owned mobile devices in the workplace will more than double next yar, reaching 350 million compared with almost 150 million this year.” Unfortunately, another recent study by the security awareness training company KnowBe4 and the research firm ITIC found that “71% of businesses that allow BYOD have no specific policies or procedures in place to insure security.” Is your company one of them? This article by Mary Brandel from Network World covers seven BYOD policy essentials.

About The Contributor:
Bob NilssonDirector of Vertical Solutions Marketing

Bob Nilsson is the director of vertical solutions marketing at Extreme Networks. In this role, Mr. Nilsson leads the Extreme Networks strategy and programs for vertical markets including Healthcare, Higher Education, K-12 Education, Federal Government, and Hospitality. He has over 30 years of experience in marketing IT systems to Global 1000 companies worldwide. Before joining Extreme Networks Bob was VP Marketing at Clear Methods. Prior to that Bob held senior marketing positions at Digital Equipment and HP. Bob holds an SB degree in EE from MIT and MBA from Columbia Business School.

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