Thinking Outside the Box (or Container)

by Eric Klein | 05/30/2014

The IT Security landscape must continue to evolve in response to sea change of user and enterprise behavior that has come with the increased usage of mobile applications. This comes in addition to the continued trend toward cloud computing, an increased reliance on the web for transacting with customers, and the increased sophistication of those looking to exploit IT infrastructures. Bottom line, in corporate settings, mobile users and their devices have become a big security pain point and one that must be addressed.

While BYOD trends are delivering new opportunities in enterprise settings, there is no question that they also introduce new risks. In order to support device choice, IT organizations need to invest in software and infrastructure to protect mobile deployments and manage device and carrier diversity. EMM vendors have taken a very deliberate and measured approach to helping organizations deal with BYOD that has coalesced around containerization; collectively, this approach seems to be gaining traction in the enterprise. However, without the appropriate policies, training and governance mechanisms in place, our personal and corporate data will increasingly be comingled which can result in data leakage and can potentially put organizations at risk. While recent public filings indicate that several high profile EMM vendors have yet to reach profitability, their commercial viability has been proven by their robust customer uptake. Additionally, the consolidation activity and sharpened focus from large and established vendors shows that this market has matured.

Catching up Will be Difficult

In this vein, VDC is closely tracking several innovative startups that we see as tackling the mobile data challenge with a different approach. Vendors on our radar include: BlueBox Security, Cellrox, MobileSpaces, and MobileO2. We see these new entrants to the market as having disruptive potential due to their focus on delivering a superior user experience, balance user privacy concerns, while giving IT leaders and CIOs the visibility they require into how users are using their devices and where their corporate data is moving.

These vendors have been able to articulate their differentiation, but will need to get their solutions deployed for validation and to prove their commercial viability. Conversations with these vendors revealted that each shares a different view on what they consider containerization. To these vendors, moving into a work persona is a form of containerization, or any app that is “badged” may also be considered as being containerized. We anticipate that discussions with reference customers will provide more detail of the scope and success of these early deployments.

In order to meaningfully participate in the market for enterprise mobility management solutions, these vendors must quickly establish partnerships in the channel which at this stage of the game will be required for longevity and relevance in the market.

VDC clients will gain access to broader coverage of this topic in the next VDC View that we will be publishing next week.