Essential Guide

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Mobile endpoint security: What enterprise infosec pros must know now

The number and type of mobile devices entering the enterprise grows monthly, and the challenge for security professionals gets ever more complex. This guide shows you how to meet the challenges that mobility brings.

The increased use of smartphones and tablets in the enterprises means IT security teams now must set controls on all those mobile endpoints. The aim is to ensure compliance and acceptable use policies, but there's nothing obvious or easy about meeting this challenge. This guide brings insights on the scope of the mobile challenge and the various approaches that enterprises (and vendors) are taking in response. We'll look at how to set strategy and policies to ensure successful mobile device management, and also zero in on the tools, software and training required to turn policy on paper into effective action. Because the security landscape never stops changing, we'll also consider more advanced topics like mobile application management, device visibility, containerization and more.

STRATEGY AND POLICY

1. Mobile device management strategy and policy

The number and types of mobile devices employees are bringing into the enterprise is exploding, and information security pros need to get a plan in place now to deal with them. A clear and comprehensive mobile endpoint security strategy, backed by effective policies, is crucial to figuring out exactly how to keep sensitive company information secure. Read on to learn about the risks mobile devices present, and why a well-thought-out strategy, backed by focused and effective policies, are the best first steps toward meeting the challenge of a secure, modern mobile business world.

TOOLS AND TRAINING

2. MDM tools, training and software

Once a company's information security experts have set their strategy and devised policies to meet the mobile challenge, the next step is to take action. The transformation from policy to effective action requires both advanced tools and employee training. The MDM product landscape changes rapidly; here's some of the latest intel for infosec pros to help them evaluate the available tools and vendors. And don't forget that crucial other step in achieving mobile endpoint security: employee training. The best tool in the universe has zero effectiveness if it's not used, or not used correctly.

MOBILE ENDPOINTS

3. Focusing on the endpoints

Those handy little devices -- laptops, smartphones, tablets -- that improve our 21st-century lives can also be the source of nightmares for security professionals. The brands and capabilities of mobile endpoints are proliferating month by month, and enterprise IT departments must consider the particulars of each type in order to implement an MDM strategy. This section of our guide addresses the peculiarities of various endpoints, how to secure them and what to do when the worst happens -- when a mobile device filled with valuable enterprise data is lost or stolen and has the ability to connect to enterprise data resources.

BEYOND MDM

4. Moving beyond mobile device management

In the modern security world, it's no longer enough to merely secure mobile devices. CIOs, infosec pros and MDM vendors must broaden their horizons and consider growing threats like mobile malware. The security vocabulary must expand beyond MDM to include mobile application management (MAM), mobile information management (MIM) and more. Or, as one of our experts in this segment of the guide puts it, "MDM is a necessary, but not sufficient, mobility management capability today."

EMERGING MOBILE ISSUES

5. Emerging issues: Device visibility and containerization

A security pro's work is never done! If change is the only constant in the security world, that means that once you have an MDM strategy and policy in place, and mobile endpoint management begun, the potential new threats and means for meeting them must next be considered. Read this segment of our guide to learn the latest about device and application visibility, containerization and other advanced concepts.

Video

6. MDM videos: From basic concepts to new ones

Reinforce what you've learned in the preceding guide sections with these essential videos from the SearchSecurity team of independent IT professionals. These audiovisuals cover the fundamentals of MDM as well as the emerging concepts you need to know.

GLOSSARY

7. Key terms for the MDM world and beyond

Parlez-vous MDM? Be sure you're fluent in the key mobile device management concepts. Learn our list of words to know and understand.