11:25 AM
Connect Directly

3 Ways To Virtualize Mobile Devices -- And Why You Should Do So

The idea of splitting smartphones and tablets into personal and business partitions is gaining strength, for good reason. But be warned -- iOS shops will have a tougher go of it.

A less effective but more easily implemented alternative to wrapping entire apps is to create a centrally managed encrypted storage volume or local folder for enterprise applications. Although they don't provide control over usage policies or all forms of data movement between business and personal environments (think clipboard or emailing to an external account), encrypted containers do allow for central management of data storage policies and remote wipes. One downside to these products, like Good Dynamics, is that apps need extra code, typically implemented via vendor-supplied SDKs and libraries, to provide the necessary software hooks to use encrypted containers and follow centrally set data access policies. In this era of ubiquitous cloud file storage and sync services, it's probably a better bet to just keep persistent data off the device in the first place via a cloud service like Box or Syncplicity.

>> Trusted remote app execution: An alternative to carving out a separate business environment on personal devices is to simply move app execution off the device entirely, a technique that's been used in various forms -- VDI, terminal services, application streaming, browser apps -- on PCs for years. As with containerized apps, the advantage is that business apps appear in the personal workspace. Application streaming products like Citrix Receiver use a locally installed native client (the receiver) that provides faster app performance and a somewhat better user experience compared with a browser.

There are downsides, however. First, apps generally can't be used offline on mobile devices (though some products do offer caching on Windows devices). This shouldn't be much of an issue in the age of ubiquitous 3G/LTE connectivity. Second, the user experience may suffer if remote applications were developed for a PC with keyboard and mouse, not a touch-sensitive device.

While mobile device virtualization and compartmentalization technologies are still in flux, they make sense now for users accessing sensitive information or in regulated industries.

What are your security concerns?

Has any mobile device data gone missing?

2 of 2
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Apprentice
7/13/2014 | 8:33:50 PM
Security apps
There is a big call for security apps in cell phones. This post gets into one of the major problems in this society. Stealing cell phones is a big problem here in the Netherlands, and probably in most countries.
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Five Emerging Security Threats - And What You Can Learn From Them
At Black Hat USA, researchers unveiled some nasty vulnerabilities. Is your organization ready?
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
Published: 2015-10-15
The Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) subsystem in the Linux kernel through 4.x mishandles requests for Graphics Execution Manager (GEM) objects, which allows context-dependent attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) via an application that processes graphics data, as demonstrated b...

Published: 2015-10-15
netstat in IBM AIX 5.3, 6.1, and 7.1 and VIOS 2.2.x, when a fibre channel adapter is used, allows local users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in eXtplorer before 2.1.8 allows remote attackers to hijack the authentication of arbitrary users for requests that execute PHP code.

Published: 2015-10-15
Directory traversal vulnerability in QNAP QTS before 4.1.4 build 0910 and 4.2.x before 4.2.0 RC2 build 0910, when AFP is enabled, allows remote attackers to read or write to arbitrary files by leveraging access to an OS X (1) user or (2) guest account.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) 1.1j allows local users to gain privileges via vectors involving addition of an SSH key, aka Bug ID CSCuw46076.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
According to industry estimates, about a million new IT security jobs will be created in the next two years but there aren't enough skilled professionals to fill them. On top of that, there isn't necessarily a clear path to a career in security. Dark Reading Executive Editor Kelly Jackson Higgins hosts guests Carson Sweet, co-founder and CTO of CloudPassage, which published a shocking study of the security gap in top US undergrad computer science programs, and Rodney Petersen, head of NIST's new National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education.