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e20 Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Flint Brenton, XebiaLabs Blog, Cloud Best Practices Network

Related Topics: CIO, IT Strategy, Enterprise 2.0, Mobile Apps, Security

CIO: Blog Post

Security & Mobile Experience Are Symbiotic By @JackieKahle | @CloudExpo [#Cloud]

Studies show that both security and mobility are not mutually exclusive

A new report sponsored by CA Technologies examines how IT and business leaders aim to sync the security and mobile user experience. CA Technologies’ latest research determines that though top concerns of IT Security practices include the elimination of breaches, data protection and identities – mobility customer experience, in fact, ranks number two in top security priorities.

Yes, that really says 42% of respondents say improving mobile customer experience is a top priority for their organization, which is a great thing. After all, did you see how many iPhones Apple sold last quarter? That’s a lot of mobile devices being used for commerce, data collection, work and play. And latest research sees it having an impact on security practices.

Digging a little deeper into the results brings more encouraging data: Controllers rank improving mobile customer experience slightly higher than enablers (44 percent vs 42 percent). This means even those with a conservative view of security practices realize they can’t ignore the user experience while keeping systems secure.

Customers and employees have a love-hate relationship with security practices. We want our data and systems safe, but cumbersome passwords, secret questions and authorization links make our jobs and daily lives more difficult. Strong passwords alone are hard enough to type on a full-size keyboard while sitting at your desk. Using a small touch screen to enter 16 random characters, numbers and symbols feels impossible.

Security boundaries are being pushed by mobile technologies. It is no longer about throwing a moat around systems and data to keep the bad guys out and good guys in. Data flows everywhere and people want access from anywhere. Organizations are taking advantage of application programming interfaces (API), enterprise mobility management and other technologies to provide access in ways we couldn't dream of a just few years ago.

It is gratifying to see that as organizations open up data and enable productivity, they’re also not trying to tie old-school security practices to newer forms of technology and interfaces. Instead, they’re leveraging new digital identities, threat analytics and more to maintain a good security posture while keeping a positive frame of mind about user experience.

Mobile is not only the future, it is now, making it imperative that those charged with designing and enforcing IT security walk the fine line of protecting data and enabling the customer experience.

More Stories By Jackie Kahle

Jackie is a 30-year veteran of the IT industry and has held senior management positions in marketing, business development, and strategic planning for major systems, software, and services companies including Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, and Gartner. She currently manages the strategy and execution of CA Technologies thought leadership programs. Jackie has an MBA from the Whittemore School, University of New Hampshire, a BA in Mathematics from New York University and is the Vice-Chair of the N.H. State Council on the Arts.