Mobile devices have become as common as a wallet or purse. We don’t leave home without them and when we do it’s only because we have forgotten them. Mobile devices have become indispensible because they are now so much more than a phone. In fact, the phone function has almost become secondary to using our mobile devices for other activities including games, texting, presentations, demos, and so on.
Naturally, the mobile device, especially iPhone and iPads, have made their way into the workplace. Not because they are neat to have at work, but because they are handy and helpful in getting work tasks completed. Some companies have embraced mobile technology and have provided these devices to their employees to help them improve productivity and get their jobs done more easily.
Over the past few years the line has blurred between personal and work life. This new mobility allows employees to work from the office, their home, or on the road. There is no distinction between location and no delineation when the workday starts or ends. Regardless of the philosophical implications of this new, mobile world and its impact on our lives, it’s with us and it must be managed from an IT perspective.
Companies face the challenge of managing devices that they may not own because the employee has purchased them. This is where identity management can play a key role. In addition to managing cloud-apps and user accounts scattered across your network, your IT staff must implement an identity management solution that can manage mobile devices…one that is flexible enough to include new devices that want to join your network. Mobile devices are those new devices right now!
Your identity management solution must also be flexible enough so that is does not require the installation and maintenance of software on the tablet or smartphone. This type of flexibility makes it possible to secure any mobile platform and operating system since the employee owns many devices and they would prefer to not have corporate controls installed directly on them. Utilizing a single sign-on URL, for example, where the user can go to log in will allow you to manage employee access and yet not impact their mobile device. A single sign-on solution for mobile users also allows them to access the corporate apps to which they have access.
Increasingly the technology assets that your employees use may not be company-owned. IT must strike a balance between their need to access the corporate network and the need to protect and manage access to valuable intellectual property. Identity Management that supports mobile devices is your best option to ensure that both groups meet their objectives.