Enterprise IT Watch Blog


November 16, 2012  2:07 PM

Riding the consumerization wave

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

By Cesare Garlati (@CesareGarlati)

Rather than resist it, organizations should embrace Consumerization to unlock its business potential. This requires a strategic approach, flexible policies and appropriate security and management tools.

The consumerization of IT is the single most influential technology trend of this decade. Companies are already well aware of it, as they wrestle with the growing influence of smartphones, tablets, Facebook, Twitter and on and on. While this growth does bring risks, too many companies make the mistake of trying to resist the influx of consumer IT. So what are the solutions and best practices for a company to turn consumerization into a competitive advantage?

One: Have a plan. Take a strategic approach to Consumerization and develop a cross-organizational plan. IT cannot do this in a vacuum and will have to engage executives, line of business owners (marketing, sales, HR, product development) as well as customers, partners, and internal early adopters. While planning to adopt new consumer technology, IT managers should survey their most innovative users to discover what devices and applications they like and what they find most useful in their work activities. In this way IT will pull from users’ experience rather than pushing IT views to their base.

Two: Say yes – but not to everything for everyone. Develop a set of policies that clearly define what devices and applications are considered corporate-standard (fully supported by IT) vs. tolerated (jointly supported with the user) vs. deprecated (full user liability). In addition, IT should profile the global workforce based on relevant attributes such as role, line of business and location. And then map technologies to user profiles and define SLAs for each intersection.

Three: Put the right infrastructure in place. Deploy appropriate IT tools specifically designed to secure and manage consumer technology in the enterprise. Be aware that while some solutions have already materialized along the lines of specific product segments, no single vendor can provide one single solution covering all functional requirements across all platforms. As vendors enter the Consumerization space with solutions initially developed for adjacent product segments, most solutions tend to offer overlapping core functionality and to lack the cross-platform support critical to protect and manage the full spectrum of Consumer technologies. Therefore, IT will have to integrate multiple offerings across different product categories: security solutions for Internet content security, mobile antimalware and mobile data protection, Mobile Device Management tools for system provisioning and application management, and Telecom Expense Management providers for procurement, support and cost control of voice and data services.

In conclusion, organizations need to embrace consumerization to unlock it business potential. This requires a strategic approach, flexible policies and appropriate security and management tools.

Have you seen this strategy working well in your company? Not at all?  Let me know. Leave a comment here.

This content has been re-posted with consent from BringYourOwnIT.com.

November 15, 2012  1:17 PM

IT infographic: The history of cloud technology

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

For many people, the idea of cloud computing is fairly new to the IT industry. However, it actually dates back to the 1960s, as J.C.R. Licklider introduced us to the notion of  an ‘intergalactic computer network‘.

This infographic from NTTCOM.TV displays how cloud computing has evolved over the course of history, from its beginning to 2012. Tell us in the comments below what you think the future of the ‘cloud’ holds in store for us.


November 14, 2012  4:04 PM

YouTube IT video of the week: Microsoft Surface gets run over

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

As more reviews continue to come in for Microsoft’s new tablet, ‘Surface‘, Mashable has a particularly unique take. This video shows how one Surface tablet got run over by a car — and lived to tell the tale.

Disclaimer: All videos presented in the “YouTube IT Video of the Week” series are subjectively selected by ITKnowledgeExchange.com community managers and staff for entertainment purposes only. They are not sponsored or influenced by outside sources.


November 13, 2012  9:55 AM

This week in tech history: Google buys YouTube

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

YouTube image via Shutterstock

On November 13, 2006, Google completed the acquisition of the video-sharing website, YouTube, for an estimated $1.65 billion.

The social media platform, created by Chad Hurley, Steve Chen and Jawed Karim, has exploded across the Internet world and is the #3 ranked website in the world according to Alexa’s traffic rankings.

We’ll give away 400 Knowledge Points to the person who can tell us the most popular YouTube video of all time. (HINT: It’s a music video).

Each Tuesday, the ITKE team will take you back in time, as we take a look at the events that have changed technology history. Have a tip for us? Email mtidmarsh@techtarget.com or find us on Twitter (@ITKE).

Disclaimer: All posts presented in the “This week in tech history” series are subjectively selected by ITKnowledgeExchange.com community managers and staff for entertainment purposes only. They are not sponsored or influenced by outside sources.

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November 9, 2012  3:44 PM

BYOD best practices: Three pitfalls you can’t afford to ignore

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

By Cesare Garlati (@CesareGarlati)

In a previous post, I raised three pitfalls that your BYOD program cannot afford to ignore when allowing employees to use their personal devices for work:

– Remote deletion of personal data on an employee-owned device
– Tracking an individual’s location
– Monitoring an employee’s Internet access

Based on my involvement with various BYOD projects and my ongoing conversations with many industry experts, here is my recommendation for three best practices that will allow you to strike the delicate balance between employee privacy and corporate liability:

  • Have a Comprehensive, Clear Policy that explicitly covers these issues of data deletion, location tracking and Internet monitoring.

HR, Legal, and Communications should provide their expertise to create the actual document. This is not solely the IT department’s responsibility. It requires far more than a little box to check off, as you would when accepting a software user agreement. The details must be read, understood and signed off on. Employees must be trained.

To that point, the policy document must be in clear layperson language, and spell out all the bad things that could happen to your device in a worst-case situation. For example: If my smartphone/tablet is stolen, the company will remotely wipe any sensitive corporate data from it.  I understand and accept that there is potential risk to my personal data.

The policy should cover possible confiscation of a personal device—if the company’s electronic communications and actual devices should be impounded during an E-Discovery legal case. Here, the company should state its position about replacing an employee’s personal device.

The company must be up-front in acknowledging that in exchange for using the corporate network, IT will have the ability to locate your device at any time.

Finally, with respect to monitoring Internet activity, the policy should be exceedingly clear:  Any data I access through the Internet when I am attached to the corporate network may be monitored and logged. The company has a responsibility not to divulge my personal information, unless there is criminal activity that the company would be obligated to report to authorities.

  • Do Not Assume That One Policy Size Fits All Users

Design your policy with the ability to tailor it for different groups of users and limit device control and user tracking to the minimum required by your company’s regulations.

There is no need to require an employee to accept the possibility of personal data wiping if s/he only uses the corporate network to browse the Internet.  On the other hand, an engineer needing access to the company’s Intellectual Property needs to accept a different level of privacy exposure.

Work with functional managers to help determine the degree of access you grant.

If you are dealing with a senior executive, your role may be to personally detail the potential exposures of sensitive corporate data.

  • Deploy the Right IT Infrastructure for Your Situation

The right IT infrastructure for Consumerization may include deploying different solutions to mitigate the pitfalls of employee privacy while securing corporate data.

Use as much virtualization as possible. VDI or other similar means to provide remote access to corporate applications from laptops and desktops is an approach I recommend where employee privacy is of concern.  No corporate data resides on the employee device, so there is nothing to wipe out.  Likewise, there is no need to track location, because everything is happening inside your data center. There’s also nothing to monitor in the device itself, because the virtual desktop activity is local to your corporate network.

Mobile Device Management is needed to secure smartphones and tablets where the virtual environment does not work well because of the small screens, or because the target mobile operating system doesn’t provide true VDI support yet – such as Apple iOS and Android.

Consider pseudo virtualized solution for Android devices.  These essentially split the ‘personality’ of the smartphone, which allows the user to have separate user identities by partitioning the personal and corporate sides.

In conclusion: Consumerization and BYOD are real and here to stay. Rather than resist it, organizations should embrace BYOD programs to unlock the business potential of Consumerization. This requires a strategic approach, new flexible policies and appropriate security and management tools.

This content has been re-posted with consent from BringYourOwnIT.com.


November 8, 2012  1:13 PM

IT infographic: Is your organization afraid of the cloud?

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

Cloud computing has become a very hot topic in the technology industry over the past few years. Even though it presents several benefits for companies (lower costs, DR improvements and remote access), some are still skeptical on why they should switch to the ‘cloud’. This infographic from CA Technologies goes into the reasons why enterprises are afraid of it.

Tell us in the comments below why you think companies are resisting cloud computing.


November 7, 2012  2:24 PM

YouTube IT video of the week: President Obama on technology

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

After President Obama’s election victory last night, many experts are wondering what technology policy changes he’ll make during his second term. In this video, Bloomberg reporter Cory Johnson spoke to Steve Westly, managing partner of The Westly Group, about Obama’s visit to Silicon Valley last year and what the President will do for jobs in the technology market.

Tell us in the comments below what you think Obama’s victory means for the IT industry.

Disclaimer: All videos presented in the “YouTube IT Video of the Week” series are subjectively selected by ITKnowledgeExchange.com community managers and staff for entertainment purposes only. They are not sponsored or influenced by outside sources.


November 6, 2012  11:42 AM

This week in tech history: Dell launches!

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

Dell image via Shutterstock

On November 4, 1984, Michael Dell founded the Dell company from his college dorm, selling IBM PC-compatible computers built from stock components. Now, it’s the third largest PC vendor in the world, behind HP and Lenovo, and is ranked #44 on Fortune’s 500 list.

We’ll award 250 Knowledge Points to anyone who can tell us which college he attended. (HINT: ‘Hook ’em Horns)

Each Tuesday, the ITKE team will take you back in time, as we take a look at the events that have changed technology history. Have a tip for us? Email mtidmarsh@techtarget.com or find us on Twitter (@ITKE).

Disclaimer: All posts presented in the “This week in tech history” series are subjectively selected by ITKnowledgeExchange.com community managers and staff for entertainment purposes only. They are not sponsored or influenced by outside sources.


November 1, 2012  1:55 PM

IT infographic: Big data isn’t scary

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

As more data is collected and stored all across the world, the term ‘big data’ might be scary for some companies and CIOs. However, this infographic from ActianCorp shows why it’s not as frightening as you think.

 


October 31, 2012  3:28 PM

Events galore in November 2012

Michael Tidmarsh Michael Tidmarsh Profile: Michael Tidmarsh

Events image via Shutterstock

November is a crazy month for events as TechTarget and several other companies will be hosting conferences all across the world. See if you have the time to attend!

1. BUILD 2012 (October 30-November 2, Redmond, Washington)

2. Gartner Symposium ITxpo 2012 (November 5-8, Barcelona, Spain)

3. GoCloud8: Chicago (November 8, Chicago, Illinois)

4. Storage Decisions 2012: San Francisco (November 8, San Francisco, California)

5. TechTarget: Desktop Virtualization 2012 (November 8, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

6. 8th Annual Content Management Strategies/DITA Europe 2012  (November 12-13, Frankfurt, Germany)

7. Gartner Symposium ITxpo 2012 (November 12-15, Gold Coast, Australia)

8. MobilWare 5th International Conference on Mobile Wireless Middleware, Operating Systems and Applications (November 13-14, Berlin, Germany)

9. New York City Technology Forum (November 13-14, New York, New York)

10. TechTarget: Desktop Virtualization 2012 (November 13, Miami, Florida)

11. TechTarget: Disaster Recovery for the 21st Century (November 13, London, England)

12. TechTarget: Next-Gen Backup School (November 13, Austin, Texas)

13. Smart Solutions for Next Generation Telcos (November 14-15, London England)

14. TechTarget: Desktop Virtualization 2012 (November 15, Portland, Oregon)

15. TechTarget: Storage for Virtual Servers and Desktops (November 15, New York, New York)

16. FIMA (Financial Information Management Conference) (November 20-22, London, England)

17. MobiHealth 3rd International Conference on Wireless Mobile Communication and Healthcare (November 21-23, Paris, France)

18. ClearEdge IT Solutions MapReduce for Programmers (November 26-28, Jessup, Maryland)

19. AWS re:Invent (November 27-29, Las Vegas, Nevada)

20. Gartner Enterprise Architecture Foundation Seminars (November 29-30, Las Vegas, Nevada)

We’ll be sharing IT events each month here on the Enterprise IT Watch blog. Got an event to add to our list? Let us know via Twitter (@ITKE) or email. Going to one of these events? Share your takeaways (and photos) with us!


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