rockonAnd with one phrase, Gartner struck fear into the hearts of MDM companies around the globe: “Mobile Device Management Won’t Last.”

Of course, security experts just nodded and continued on with their days because we know there isn’t a one size fixes all solution when it comes to mobile security. MDM isn’t an exception. However, this article has an:

  • Excellent first part (MDM market commoditizing)
    AND a
  • Completely short sighted second part (MAM/app-containers is the answer. No one size answer, remember?)

Note the quote from the lead Gartner analyst (my highlight) in relations to the grass root employee resistance to current day MDM/MAM approaches:

“I can’t really whitelist or blacklist apps or have remote control or permission to wipe your device, and I can’t tell you where to take your device because of BYOD,” Girard said.

The real challenge is not device/app management, it is data management. The device or apps are merely tools or vessels for the data to be captured and then handed over. The enterprise security panic lies around the lack of true controls over the data. This same control would start at identifying how the data is captured (manual entry, auto capture or peripheral capture; e.g. notes taken on a device, location logs, picture taken; respectively).

Now, this is the important point. What makes things really complex is that data is highly contextual. For example, the notes I enter with my shopping list are not confidential (for the most part…), but my meeting notes should be.

A better acronym to what needs to be built is Advanced Contextual Data Control (AC/DC) – especially for old fans of the Australian hard rock band from the 70’s.

As we augment and enhance our context-aware engine, we need to keep in mind that the ability to analyze and classify data context properly will become key to handling it and not shaking it all night long. Location is the foundation of the contextual construct in a mobile world. Hence our unfair advantage; we have TNT while everyone else has matches.