IT | Security

Predictions for Mobile in 2013

By: Absolute Team | 12/31/2012

There is no question that 2012 has seen a radical shift in the way employees do business; mobile devices have become an integral part of how people work and they are here to stay. We'd like to share some of those predictions and add a few of our own.

BYOD and CoPE Will Rise

While the news continues to centre around BYOD, we predict that organizations will begin to see the benefits of CoPE as well, with more companies investing in both options in 2013. Our own research shows that 42% of companies use a hybrid model of BYOD and CoPE, though most companies lack or are inconsistent with their mobile policies.

Mobility-Related Data Breaches to Increase

Given the rate of adoption of mobile devices in the workplace, we expect to see more data breaches attributed to mobile device loss.

Currently, 31% of companies surveyed do not have employee agreements in place to remotely lock devices and wipe data in the event of loss or theft. Nearly 85% of U.S. companies allow their employees to personally manage their own mobile devices, but only 45% require a password to access corporate networks and data – leaving a large gap in overall security.

The Smartphone Landscape Will Shift

InfoWorld's Galen Gruman recently shared his thoughts for the mobile landscape in 2013, predicting "mobile innovation, missteps, and regrouping will come to a head" in the coming year. As Galen summarizes, the mobile landscape since 2008 has been dominated by the innovation by Apple, but both Google and Samsung "woke up" in the past year, with the overall smartphone landscape set to shift as new players offer their own innovations. The article does a great job highlighting the challenges and opportunities each smartphone player faces in the next year.

We predict that corporations will see an increased demand for a variety of device types, making centralized mobile device management even more important.

Mobile Data Theft to Increase

With consumers carrying more personal information on their phones, including payment information, and employees using smartphones for work, smartphones have become a target for criminals hoping to capture personal information. In addition to cybercriminals targeting mobiles with malware and phishing and smishing (text message) schemes, smartphones are one of the top targets of robbers looking to make a quick buck by reselling devices and/or their information.

Enterprise Apps to Mainstream

As enterprises clue in to how employees are using their devices, the importance of managing data will come in to play. In that, enterprises will begin to look into corporate app stores to manage what apps are in use, whether apps are approved and that apps follow security controls for data use.

As we shared in our research report, 35% of companies do not have a formal procedure for verifying and distributing apps. Though many companies use whitelisting to limit app access (67%), nearly half do not have an app blacklist. Mobile application management will be crucial to maintaining control of corporate data.