Cloud Challenges: #3 Mobility

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Mobility-story-newsfeedSo far in this blog series we have been looking at control and security as two major cloud challenges. Increased mobility is one of the great benefits with the cloud but mobility also presents a host of new challenges for IT-security, especially in a corporate environment.

The bring-your-own-device trend goes hand in hand the staggering popularity of smartphones and tablets. Together with the expansion of the cloud, these tendencies are fundamentally changing the way people interact with technology.

A mobile device is most likely to be used as an access point to important content stored on the cloud – a company’s balance sheet, an artist’s portfolio, an online calendar with important appointments. Constant availability is becoming the norm. In many cases, the value of the information may be far greater than that of the device.

Nevertheless, even though an ever-growing number of services are joining in the mobile revolution, their security regrettably lags behind. Fixed passwords are still the most common security measure. Furthermore, mobile devices are typically owned, or at least managed, by end users. Company policies may or may not apply. Another threat that is commonly overlooked is the vulnerability in mobile apps. Some security experts claim that more than 90% of all apps lack security shielding making them vulnerable to malicious code injection. This, in turn, paves the way for key logging, screen logging and content manipulation.

What is required is a security solution built in the infrastructure itself, integrated seamlessly into the services which the users need. Only with full control over identity and access can an organisation tap into the full potential of mobility. Single sign-on provides one effective answer, applicable equally to desktop and mobile.

However, newfangled IT products have a bad reputation for driving up costs. Is that the case with the kind of cloud single sign-on we propose here – or could such a solution even help a company save money?