Smartphones are something of a necessary evil in the eyes of most IT administrators. The combination of support and security issues can cost millions of dollars every year and hamstring other projects more closely aligned with pressing business priorities.
So, as Datamation reports, many companies are washing their hands of the smartphone problem and hiring third-party, cloud-based security and management specialists to handle the tedious but critical tasks of managing disparate mobile operating systems and securing information flowing to and from all these mobile devices.
The unintended consequence of embracing all these mobile devices and operating systems in the enterprise is that most companies can’t afford to dedicate too much of their time or personnel to lock down these devices the way they can and do for their installed desktop and laptop computers, data centers and key business-critical applications and servers.
Forrester analysts said this rush to appease iPhone-crazed employees means most companies’ IT departments are spread too thin, opening the door for malware and data breaches from these smartphones.
CIOs long ago came to the realization that they couldn’t keep personally owned smartphones out of the enterprise. So instead of fighting it, they’re increasingly investing time and money in cloud-based mobile devices management and security applications to make the best of the situation.
According to a new report from Forrester Consulting and Fiberlink Communications, a provider of cloud-hosted mobile IT compliance services, more than half of the financial services firms surveyed are now supporting their employees’ personal iPhone, BlackBerry and Droid smartphones even though it increases both the cost and complexity of their IT security projects.
In fact, more than one-third of the companies surveyed are now supporting multiple mobile operating systems and 10 percent are supporting four or more mobile OSs.