Time for some Fact Checking in the Mobile Security Space


One can’t have watched (suffered through?) the Republican and Democratic National conventions without having heard the term “fact check” used over and over and over again by every television, radio and print journalist reporting on what was being said by members of both parties.

The Daily Show, Jon Stewart’s fake news program, had a regular spot during the conventions on what facts had been checked each day.   And, during Tom Brokaw’s guest spot, Stewart (FINALLY!) made the inciteful comment “didn’t we used to call these people (fact checkers) ‘journalists’?”, correctly pointing out that the job of an investigative journalist is (or used to be) to get to the facts – NOT to simply report what someone had said and then delegate the pursuit of truth to “fact checkers”.

It is against this backdrop that I concluded that it’s about time to do some “fact checking” on claims being made by companies in the mobile security space related to their products’ DLP capabilities.  As the CEO of a company with the ONLY true mobile DLP solution in the market, it is with much interest that I continue to see marketing press from companies who claim to solve the mobile DLP problem.

So, let me steal a line from Dragnet’s Sergeant Friday (Jack Webb, one of my favorite character actors of all time), and say that when it comes to Mobile DLP claims I’d like “Just the facts, ma’am, just the facts”.

CLAIM – Mobile Device Management (MDM) companies say “We do DLP” (data loss prevention – the ability to protect corporate data on smartphones and tablets).

FACT CHECK

   

       MDM companies do exactly what their name suggests – they manage devices, not the data on those devices.

CLAIM – MDM protects corporate data on smartphones by sending a remote wipe command to the phone in the event it is lost or stolen.

FACT CHECK

     Remote wipe (actually, a factory reset command sent over the air to the phone) will erase the data stored in the device’s memory. However, in the case of Android devices, most data is stored on the phone’s SD card, and the SD card is not erased by the factory   reset command.

CLAIM – So called “app wrapping” companies protect corporate data on smartphones.

FACT CHECK

    This is true ONLY if the corporate data you want to protect just happens to be on those apps that are “wrapped”.  Otherwise, it’s not protected.  And, app wrapping has inherent limitations – for example, app wrapping doesn’t work for pre-loaded apps, like native email, or third party apps downloaded from commercial app stores and, you run into problems upgrading wrapped apps (to be clear, you CAN’T upgrade them without re-wrapping).  Besides, we at SpydrSafe are “ROCKERS”, not “WRAPPERS”.

There are a number of other claims out there – and like much of what we heard during the National Conventions, many are downright false or at best partially true.  So, what needs to be done is to look at all the available solutions on the market and choose the one or ones that provide the security you’re looking for.

FINAL CLAIM – SpydrSafe Mobile Security’s Mobile DLP solution protects sensitive data on smartphones and tablets by controlling the apps on that device – any app, whether pre-loaded, commercial or developed “in-house”, with no app or OS modifications and with no OEM or ISV relationships required.

FACT CHECK

      Of course, don’t just take my word for it, check the facts.

 

 

 

ASG

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