SC Magazine: Securing the Mobile Endpoint

Quotes from a recent SC Magazine article “Increased Mobile Working Has Caused a Rethink on Endpoint Security” (here) focuses on encryption, cloud-computing and desktop virtualization…

Data breaches have pointed to the importance of encryption at endpoints that contain business data, and growing numbers of businesses are adopting encryption technologies. However, Amrit Williams, CTO of BigFix, is sceptical of the business case. “Encryption is a great boon, as long as the data is at rest. That covers theft or casual loss of the device, which is one loss case out of many – it really doesn’t cover anything else.”

…This is where the second school of thought comes in – cloud computing and, ultimately, desktop virtualisation. Cloud computing is everywhere right now, and everyone, from traditional AV vendors through to sales CRM system firms, claims to be involved. The benefits can include huge cost savings, but the downsides can be considerable. Says Williams: “The hype must surely have reached a peak by now. It seems a lot of people are confusing the cloud concept with the internet itself.”

…Williams is confident a cloud model holds many of the answers, but that the central question is about control and visibility, rather than security minutiae. “The loss of visibility is a huge problem, and one that needs to be addressed for the market to mature. The key is that an individual business can’t change any settings. The best-case scenario is a good SLA, but this only provides a process, rather than a hands-on recourse in the event of a problem.”

…In spite of his enthusiasm for the technology involved, Williams also believes that the barriers to entry are high: “Organisations need to tread carefully here, and move non-critical applications into the cloud first. Once trust has been established and reputations made, then the concept of virtualisation will sit better – you don’t want to be the first business to make a mistake here. Also, in some cases, the cost of implementing virtual desktops is up to ten times the cost of managing physical environments and there is almost zero improvement in security or operational efficiency. Desktop virtualisation is not the magic bullet you are looking for.”

Read the full article (here)


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