BYOD: Time to Roll with the Changes

Arthur Cole
Slide Show

Seven BYOD Management Tips

Change is difficult. Change is scary. This is why it is usually met with resistance at first. In time, however, what initially seems threatening often emerges as bold and exciting as anticipation of the possible overcomes fear of the unknown.

And while big changes are afoot in the enterprise - virtualization, consolidation, the cloud - none is as far-reaching in terms of the way people actually engage data environments as the rise of consumer mobile devices. And true to form, it seems that much of the hand-wringing over bring your own device (BYOD) is starting to fall by the wayside.

A new survey from Avanade Inc. reports that upwards of 60 percent of companies are actively upgrading their infrastructure to accommodate consumer devices rather than placing restrictions on access. That flies in the face of most reports thus far that indicate widespread resistance to the movement. But the simple fact is that many top executives are sporting their own mobile devices and are quickly adapting to the freedom and flexibility they provide.

So it would seem that most organizations will only be able to put the brakes on consumerization for so long, at which point the question changes from "How do we stop this?" to "How can we best accommodate this new reality without compromising our data and resource integrity?"

This is what Cisco found out in a survey of more than 1,500 IT executives intended to gauge their attitudes toward smartphones and other mobile devices. As expected, security topped the list of concerns, followed by application and data access. There's also the small matter of cost, not only for the changes in infrastructure but potential licensing of new software and services to bring new devices on board.

Obviously, part of those infrastructure changes will have to be made at the data center edge. Enterasys Networks, for example, recently upgraded its OneFabric Edge architecture to support mobile application delivery. A key component is the Wireless Services Engine (WiSE), a virtual WLAN controller that bundles traditional controller functions with security and management services on a virtual platform, enabling enterprises to quickly deploy access services to the network edge.

Indeed, wireless access to internal resources does not automatically bring chaos, according to Huddle's EVP of Strategy Andy McLoughlin. A quick audit of the most popular devices in your work force should generate three top platforms in need of support. Then a simple workflow diagram can be used to chart out the results of various deployment options, namely the decision to allow customer-owned units or to limit access to company-provided hardware and software, or perhaps a mix of both.

Part of the reason IT has become so skittish to new developments these days is that its role in the enterprise is changing in a fundamental way. As its responsibility to manage and maintain infrastructure gives way to that of services provider, many of the skills and knowledge sets that have been built up over the years will diminish in importance even as new ones rise to take their place.

What IT executives need to keep in mind, though, is that these changes are coming regardless of what device users have in their hands. And the more quickly they can adapt to this new service-based role, the easier it will be to embrace the continual evolution of data technology.

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Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Jan 31, 2012 1:02 PM Lakshmi Lakshmi  says:

BYOD is now not a taboo for the employers as the main reason of the hitch with this trend was integrity of data. With new advancements, the corporate data can be wiped out without disturbing personal data on the users' device. BYOD to work will reap better results to the employers and will save a lot of revenue in investing on expensive gadgets. Besides, the users are independent with their own choices of devices

Feb 6, 2012 11:39 AM criticas de cine criticas de cine  says:

Holy technology. I wait that comes intergalactical robots to earth.

Great article, is good to know more about this.

Feb 9, 2012 12:30 PM John Wright John Wright  says:

I can see why security is a top concern. If you are providing a way to access (via smartphone apps, etc) what was previously only accessable from within your private network, there is a far amount of work to do to ensure security. And even then, what if there is a security hole that was somehow over looked. The most secure approach is to provide the least amount of external access possible.

You also mentioned "As responsibility to manage and maintain infrastructure gives way to that of services provider". With this trend brings even greater security risk/concern. If you private network/infrastructure is outsourced to Google Apps, for instance, your control of security is now limited. You better trust Google a whole lot, or don't use a service provider.

Yet the advantages of a service provider to offer IT services is generally the most feasible way to go for smaller startup type companies. But should they grow enough, and depending on there industry, using an IT service provider may prove to be too much of a security risk.

Feb 16, 2012 10:14 AM Adam Greenblum Adam Greenblum  says:

It's possible to address security concerns and still implement BYOD.  What's needed is to separate the Enterprise apps and data from the personal devices. This can be achieved with a solution like Ericom's AccessNow, a pure HTML5 RDP client that enables remote users to securely connect from various devices (including iPads, iPhones, Android devices and Chromebooks) to any RDP host, including Terminal Server (RDS Session Host), physical desktops or VDI virtual desktops-and run their applications and desktops in a browser. This keeps the organization's applications and data separate from the employee's personal device.  All that's needed is a HTML5 browser.  No plug-ins or anything else required on the user device.

AccessNow also provides an optional Secure Gateway component enabling external users to securely connect to internal resources using AccessNow, without requiring a VPN.

For more info, and to download a demo, visit:


Note:  I work for Ericom

May 10, 2012 7:11 PM John Andrews John Andrews  says:

BYOD is a very efficient way for enterprises to reduce costs on equipment. Of course they should acquire the appropriate networking and security technologies to make that happen, but I'm sure the costs for that are lower.


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