I’ve got to admit that the idea of using cloud-based file-sharing applications from an iPhone or iPad is very seductive, but at the same time it makes me feel uneasy as it goes against the best practices of IT governance and the basics of data protection and security – unless of course the information received is encrypted and the source data remains securely stored on-premises within the data centre, or in a trusted location. And, yet for the majority of business mobile users, there is little choice but to carry on with the madness of continuing, inexorably to move and store un-encrypted company-confidential data outside of the corporate environment.
In many respects it reminds me of the early days of technology when data was considered to have a relatively short useful life and therefore what later was realized to be important and useful information had been deleted and gone forever. Now of course we look at the long term benefits of retaining data very differently and I can’t help thinking that as an industry we will look back at this period of Mobility and Bring Your Own Device (or as some say, Bring Your Own Disaster) in a similar way in that it makes no sense for organizations to continue to turn a blind eye to the risks involved.
A few stats: Thefts ‘taken from the person’ in the UK 2013-2014 – 51% were phones (up 12% from the previous period). Around 200,000 phones left in London black taxis over the past year, over half of which were not protected by any type of pin code - leaving both private and unprotected corporate data accessible to whoever happens to find the lost device. And, when it comes to the data centre, compliance and regulation, Europe has some of the most stringent and complex data protection laws on the planet…
Somewhere along the way a compromise needs to be found between the convenience of using mobile devices and cloud-based file sharing alongside the necessary rigours of data security developed by IT departments over many years.
Ta dah! Enter – NetApp Connect as discussed by Ingo Fuchs in his excellent and insightful blog, in which Ingo, very much the ‘road warrior’ discusses from real life experience the conundrum of balancing the benefits of mobile with the need to secure and protect the company’s data.
Read Ingo Fuchs' blog 'The Mobile Workforce Conundrum - IT vs. the User':
Other resources and associated blogs:
NetApp Connect – more information: http://www.netapp.com/us/products/software/connect.aspx
Performance Management in the Hybrid Cloud http://community.netapp.com/t5/Pan-EMEA/Performance-Management-in-the-Hybrid-Cloud/ba-p/96971