RSA 2012: Mobile devices open corporate floodgates to malware

Salem told the RSA 2012 conference that as “digital natives” – those who have grown up in the digital age – enter the workforce, they will rebel against attempts to control the use of their personal devices at work.

Digital natives “not having a mobile device at their side, not having access to the internet and social networking, would be like the previous generation not having their wallet, their ID, or their glasses. The mobile device is the tool they used to connect with everything”, Salem observed.

At the same time, this reliance on mobile devices opens up the digital natives and the places where they work to increased security risks. Salem cited the Symantec State of Mobility Survey that found 59% of enterprises are making line-of-business applications accessible from mobile devices, 66% are discussing implementing a corporate “store” for mobile applications to reduce security risks, and 71% are discussing custom mobile applications.

The digital immigrants – everyone else – were introduced to the internet at work and gradually came to use the internet in their personal lives. For the digital native, there is no distinction between the internet at home and the internet at work, Salem observed.

“The most important thing about what is happening around the digital native generation is they are going to change how we are doing business. They are accelerating the consumerization of IT….They are blurring the line between business and personal”, Salem told the conference.

Resistance is futile, said Salem. “The reality is, there is no fighting” the consumerization of IT. “It is only going to accelerate. We need to get out in front of it”, he advised.

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