Mobile Device Management (MDM) – software that monitors, secures, supports and manages mobile devices.
The next step with your BYOD implementation policy is to obtain and deploy MDM software to manage all of the devices on your company network. This software can run from a single server and provide support to your network’s mobile devices around the globe. Depending on the size of your organization, you may want to consider a hosted solution. This will remove some of the complexity and administrative overhead of daily server management. You would still have full control over your deployment for policy configuration in this model.
Depending on your BYOD policy, you can configure corporate provided devices with more access or restrictions and BYOD devices that only offer restricted access to specific mail and content servers for your organization. The key to success is to ensure that your policies drive your deployment controls,. This includes making sure your users are educated on these policies. It is important to have educated users so they know to provide notification on lost and stolen devices in order to have them quickly disabled and all data remotely wiped.
For BYOD deployments you may want to spend more time considering who and what users are going to get access to. Remember that this is not your device, but your users, and they do not want to have any aspect of their mobile device being monitored by corporate. Create an awareness program that clearly defines the rules of engagements, if and when data wiping will be used. Make them sign an agreement to accept these terms of usage, as this will protect you both if a dispute occurs.
While there are many MDM offerings, spend some time learning about the features and benefits. Just so you know, this isn’t a one size fits all scenario. You also need to consider the mobile platforms to be supported and what services you would like to offer the users. If possible, ask the vendor for a 90-day trial of the product. This way you can get a good test of the solution and determine if it fits your needs. If the vendor does not offer this, try another one. They should be willing to work with you if they want your business. and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
There are a lot of companies offering MDM software, however some of the more popular ones include:
When it comes to security, remember that mobile devices are no different than a laptop. If you have specific security requirements for these devices, the same controls should exist for your mobile device. I shouldn’t need to explain why, just read my BYOD blog.
Most MDM solutions are relatively new to the market. Many of these make claims to having superior features to ensure your satisfaction before purchase. You will want to build a trusting relationship with your product vendor. Furthermore, it’s always a good idea to choose an MDM solution already being utilized by companies in a similar market to your own. Ask the vendor to reference some of their customers; it should help with your decision.
Finally, if you need help with choosing an MDM solution, device policy or understanding your mobile threat model — Find a mobile security company. They can provide the much-needed expertise to assist with your deployment, including the MDM evaluation process.