The number of mobile devices used in the workplace continues to grow, and businesses and organizations need a practical and cost-effective way to manage, monitor and track devices. Mobile device management (MDM) solutions make it possible to manage an entire fleet of mobile devices from a single platform, and they also include additional features that can provide additional value to your clients in a variety of ways, including these ten areas.
One of the biggest challenges businesses face with mobile device deployments is how to keep their networks and data secure. Mobile device management solutions include a range of features designed to enhance security, such as application blacklisting/whitelisting and malware detection. MDM solutions can also include jailbreak detection to identify devices that have been compromised, making them vulnerable to cyberattack. MDM solutions can even offer data loss prevention, monitoring outbound communications for sensitive information and blocking transmission or alerting the user or a manager. If a device is lost or stolen, an MDM solution can allow you to lock or wipe it remotely.
Keeping data secure requires that only authorized personnel can access it. MDM solutions features include role-based access control that allows administrators to grant permission to specific functions depending on whether the employee is a device user, administrator or IT support. MDM solutions can also verify the user’s identity in a number of ways including passcode and biometric authentication.
3Secure internet access and communication
An MDM solution can provide mobile users with a secure web browser and configure a VPN connection so the user can securely access the business network remotely.
Security features of leading MDM solutions include encryption, often at both the device and app levels. The solution can also encrypt emails and their attachments and may be able to work with mobile or desktop operating systems’ native encryption services.
5Where and when devices can be used
A mobile device management solution may include geofencing or time-fencing features that enable you to limit where and when a device or certain applications can be used. For example, a device may automatically lock when it leaves a facility, or social media applications may only be accessible during lunch breaks or after hours.
With more people using personal devices for work, it’s vital that businesses find a way to balance individuals’ privacy with their need for security. MDM solutions address this issue in different ways, for example by containerizing an area of the device for enterprise applications and data or by using mobile application management that lets users know their employers are only managing work applications, but not their personal apps.
MDM solutions may integrate with a variety of security and business applications to facilitate more efficient management — it allows an administrator to apply all policies from a single dashboard rather than switching back and forth between platforms.
Reporting is a particularly useful mobile device management feature, giving administrators insight into device status, security updates, noncompliant devices, usage, and device health. Additionally, audit logs can be streamed to a Syslog server to integrate with SIEM tools.
Some MDM solutions use artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to detect unusual activity such as content uploads or downloads or suspicious user behaviors and send alerts.
Some businesses may need to restrict mobile user activity to ensure there is enough bandwidth for mission-critical applications. MDM can monitor data usage and set limits that prevent large downloads or streaming.
Mobile device management solutions can also include features that identify issues with malfunctioning devices and, in some cases, correct them remotely.
The time you invest in evaluating mobile device management solution features can save hours later through enhanced efficiency, greater mobile policy compliance, and fewer security issues that can lead to data loss.
To learn more about the features of specific solutions, see our Mobile Device Management Product Comparison.