Proofpoint moves into mobile mail security

The momentum in computing adoption is with mobile

There's no doubt that the momentum in computing adoption is with mobile meaning enterprises will have to protect the communications that emanate from, and are sent to, these devices.

Unfortunately, it's not always as straightforward for companies to extend their existing e-mail encryption capabilities to their mobile devices.

Also see: 9 security tips for protecting mobile workers

Just ask Kenneth Johnston, CIO and VP of information systems at Springfield, Missouri-based Guaranty Bank. For a time, Johnston and Guaranty Bank tried using their existing secure messaging service on mobile devices with poor results. "It proved a very clunky experience for mobile. Users had to forward their encrypted messages to an internal server and we would then send them a link that they would have to open and then authenticate to before they could read their message," Johnston says.

For a more streamlined experience, Johnston turned to Proofpoint Mobile. Announced today, Proofpoint Mobile is a set of applications that Proofpoint says builds on its existing mail security solutions. Proofpoint Mobile Encryption provides secure access to encrypted messages and are delivered either through light-weight, native applications, or mobile- optimized web-based applications. "We wanted to make certain that users have a secure, yet an easy and familiar experience," says Andres Kohn vice president, technology & product management at Proofpoint.

Guaranty Bank's Johnston says that message recipients can decrypt secured messages with one click. "They click on the link, authenticate, and the message opens directly. Its very transparent," he says.

Johnston explains that the bank is using Proofpoint to enable secure communications with its commercial clients, as well as a part of its efforts to secure communications with bank employees.

Also see: Steps to secure your smartphone against data theft

In addition to the release of Mobile Encryption, Proofpoint also announced Proofpoint Enterprise Archive. Proofpoint Mobile Archive provides users a way to remotely access years worth of e-mail from their device. "Customers need to securely access all of their information from their mobile devices today," says Kohn. "In fact, they expect it."

Mobile Encryption is currently available for iPhone, Blackberry, Android, and Windows Phone 7. Mobile Archive is currently available on iPhone.

George V. Hulme writes about security and technology from his home in Minneapolis. He is an avid user of mobile devices, in fact he tweets so much at @georgevhulme that he doesnt have time to encrypt anything.

Read more about wireless/mobile security in CSOonline's Wireless/Mobile Security section.

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