Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Mobile Applications and Device Governance

My friend Puneet Suppal who works in in the Premier Customer Network at SAP, published an interesting article on SAP's Community Network last week, entitled Enterprise Mobility:  What did we learn this year?  In this article Puneet highlights the fact that with the increasing popularity of enterprise mobility there will be "... a lot of data moving dynamically between a lot of systems and devices."  This data is often confidential and important, data that companies do not want to fall into the hands of competitors.

Puneet says companies must step back and develop an enterprise mobility strategy, and one of the most important parts of that strategy is, "the governance model; a model that takes into account the organization’s sensibilities and addresses the management of these remote devices and what sits on them – and the related security aspects."

A few months ago I was at a Fortune 500 client's location teaching a workshop on enterprise mobility.  During this workshop we surveyed the various geographical regions about the mobile applications they currently supported.  It turned out there were dozens of mobile applications already deployed without corporate IT's knowledge.  These mobile applications accessed employee directories, logistics, supply chain, inventory, product sales and service systems.

It was interesting watching the expressions on the faces of the corporate IT managers as these mobile applications were announced.  I could see grimaces as the managers were listening to the sound of their confidential corporate data bursting out into the world in continuous unmanaged and unsecured streams.

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Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
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Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.