Interop NY: Security is the top BYOD challenge

Security issues and the relative novelty of the technology have Interop NY attendees worried about the impact of mobile device use in the enterprise.

MORE INTEROP: Data center operators in for a world of change

Troy Reid, marketing director for Metropolitan Website Design, says that mobile infrastructure is the main reason he came to the conference.

"That's what I'm here to learn more about, because I'm a little bit behind the times and our hardware's really outdated. My task is to get us back on track," Reid says.

Other attendees, like Alan Maendel of Community Products, seem to simply wish the problem would go away.

"I would say, maybe leave the devices at home? That would definitely solve the security headaches back at the office. But if that's necessary, just get the best protection that you can, and make it clear to the employees what the limits are."

However, Liberty Mutual technologist William Wong says there's no way to simply bury one's head in the sand -- not that this stops businesses, particularly in tightly regulated industries, from trying to do so.

""It's inevitable that you will have to support mobile devices ... however, heavily regulated industries do actually have specific policies. There are actually companies out there where it's a fireable offense to bring a smartphone in," he says.

Frank Tobias, who works for Automatic Data Processing, concurs with Wong's take on strict privacy controls.

"Especially with my company, security is a big issue. We deal with sensitive personal data," he says.

TRG Management's Mario Agoursalidis argues that centralization would be an important consideration for those dealing with BYOD.

""Have an infrastructure capable of handling all these devices -- a one-stop appliance ... able to handle any device the user brings in," he urges. "That would be ideal. This way, the tech team wouldn't have to deal with multiple appliances."

Email Jon Gold at and follow him on Twitter at @NWWJonGold.

Read more about anti-malware in Network World's Anti-malware section.

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