During our annual conference we engaged with customers and partners about all things technology — which naturally included security, as it remains a leading area of concern across most businesses today. Many organizations made exceptions to enable remote work in 2020 and 2021. Now they’re focused on closing the gaps in their security plans, including those for advanced protection of mobile devices.
Our session titled “Tear Down the Wall with Unified Endpoint Security” was an opportunity to talk about the threat landscape, customer challenges, and ways to facilitate anywhere work.
Top 3 security lessons learned
Here are three valuable takeaways:
1. Mobile security has been a sleeping giant.
Although mobile security experts have understood the risk for years, the broader population of IT and security teams is finally catching on. The Verizon Mobile Security Index shows that in 2022, reported mobile breaches have nearly doubled since 2021.
Here are some more eye-opening statistics:
- Seventy-nine percent of organizations agreed that remote working had adversely affected their cybersecurity and increased the burden on security teams.
- Forty-five percent of organizations had recently experienced a mobile-related compromise, almost twice as many as in the 2021 survey.
- Seventy-three percent of organizations that experienced mobile-related compromise described them as “major.”
2. IT and security teams are overwhelmed by increasing responsibilities.
The work of IT and security teams is growing daily, with more tasks to complete and more areas to secure. Automation is one way to give these teams time to focus on high-level work. Intelligence and automation combined can lead to self-remediation by the user. Auto-remediation, via interconnected security and management tools, can help you protect your team’s time and also bridge across functional areas for faster time-to-resolution. Threats are getting more sophisticated, and you need people to focus on the threats that need hands-on attention. The Workspace ONE platform lets you automate across teams, so that the system administrators and mobile management teams can fix issues. Workspace ONE can both eliminate and reduce a lot of mundane tasks.
3. Mobile devices are essential for work — and pose a legitimate threat.
Some work is transferring to mobile devices, other work is shared and happening across all platforms. The same goes for security threats. Some cyber threats, like phishing, are pervasive. Yet phishing needs to be addressed differently on mobile because messaging extends far beyond email to SMS and messaging apps. When it comes to mobile devices, our defenses are down. Smartphones started off as personal devices, connecting us to the most trusted people in our social networks. For many, this trust remained even as our mobile device accessibility grew beyond our contacts list to spammers and other more intrusive and dangerous threats. Now that mobile devices are a work essential, the potential risk to businesses has grown exponentially with the threat of machine-in-the-middle attacks, device and OS vulnerabilities, and leaky and malicious applications. Mobile is a point of compromise and a target, often for hackers trying to harvest credentials.
The Lookout perspective
Our panel session, “Tear Down the Wall with Unified Endpoint Security,” included security experts Evan Hurst and Arjun Narang from VMware and David Richardson from Lookout. When asked, “How do you address mobile threats?” security expert David advised the audience to start with the basics: keep mobile devices patched and updated. Also, he suggested using the tools that you have to eliminate as much risk as you can.
David also pointed out that the reason mobile security companies exist is to lend a hand and help address the myriad threats in the space. While complexity exists, our mission is to make it easier to manage day to day. VMware and Lookout worked together to develop Workspace ONE Mobile Threat Defense, our new solution for Android, iOS, and Chrome. Mobile Threat Defense integrates advanced mobile security from Lookout with Workspace ONE, so that it is easy to deploy and manage specialized protection, orchestrate remediation across the Workspace ONE platform, and share information across security and IT stakeholders. Watch the solution brief and demo here.
Let’s address this sleeping giant. It’s time.
Additional mobile security resources
The VMware team offered security expertise at the event, and that expertise is still here in cyberspace. Read Andrew Osborn’s white paper on mobile security and don’t miss Andreano Lanusse’s Mobile Threat Defense demo. You can also access more information in the Digital Workspace Tech Zone.