Securing The New New Economy Infrastructure

Unlike many new economy players of the late 1990s, notable dotcom brands of today have staying power, not only due to more viable SaaS business models, but also due to their effective use of an increasingly mature set of cloud computing services. The likes of Uber, Airbnb, Dropbox, Netflix, and others have fundamentally changed how we get ourselves, and files, for that matter, from point A to point B and how we view content when we get there. These market leaders have disrupted established markets by not only recognizing that we, the consumer, want to do pretty much everything on our smartphones (including requesting a ride) but also, more importantly, by leveraging the agility of the cloud for continuous innovation and, thus, competitive advantage. It’s the speed of DevOps and the old guard better look out, unless the disrupters themselves get disrupted.

Topics: Cybersecurity cloud mobile

Talking about Mobility at Ignite

I've been in Chicago this week for the MS Ignite conference, and the conversations I've seen revolving around enterprise mobility have been fascinating. I pulled together a Storify to recap some of what I've heard:

Topics: mobile remote office

ESG Recap of Oracle OpenWorld 2014

This year’s Oracle OpenWorld has reflected some interesting bets on the future of databases, cloud, big data, and analytics, along with many other macro-trends like social, mobile, and Internet of Things (IoT).

Oracle is doubling down on positioning itself as a cloud leader with emphasis on “pluggable” databases that can be easily hosted multi-tenant on-premises or migrated to a public cloud with a single command line. Database-as-a-service or DBaaS is clearly a priority and it’s being complemented by more cloud-oriented middleware and many new SaaS offerings.

Topics: Storage Analytics Big Data Internet of Things Data Management & Analytics IT Infrastructure cloud Oracle OpenWorld IoT Enterprise Software mobile Compute database social Oracle

The Internet of Things (IoT)

I shall be expanding on this theme--the internet of things (IoT) over the next few years, as I find it to be the most interesting thing to happen not only in tech, but potentially in modern society, ever.

Topics: Cloud Computing Analytics End-User Computing Endpoint & Application Virtualization Internet of Things Data Management & Analytics IT Infrastructure IoT Enterprise Software mobile Compute Public Cloud Service

Figuring Out FIDO (i.e., the Fast Identity Online Alliance and Standard)

No one hates passwords more than I do and it seems like I’m asked to register for a new site each day. For those of us in the know, this situation of “password sprawl” is even more frustrating because we really should have solved this problem years ago. After all, Whit Diffie, Marty Hellman, and the RSA guys first came up with PKI back in the 1970s so you’d think that passwords would be dead and strong authentication would be ubiquitous by now!

Thankfully, there may be hope on the horizon in the form of the FIDO alliance. The group, composed on a who’s who of industry big shots like ARM, Bank of America, Discover Card, Google, Lenovo, MasterCard, Microsoft, PayPal, RSA, Samsung, and VISA, is “developing technical specifications that define an open, scalable, interoperable set of mechanisms that reduce the reliance of passwords to authenticate users.” In other words, FIDO wants to introduce “trusted convenience” by making strong authentication easy to deploy and easy to use on the front-end (i.e., for users) and back-end (i.e., for IT).

Topics: End-User Computing Information and Risk Management mobile Security and Privacy

VMworld 2014: Top Questions ESG Analysts Hope to Have Answered

This will be my 9th year in a row attending VMworld! The event always proves to be a great display of end-user passion that is driving towards new innovation and IT vendors displaying their latest products, solutions, and services. I recently asked the ESG team attending the event if there was anything they planned to track closely or questions that they hoped to get the answers to and here is what they shared:

Topics: Cloud Computing Storage EMC End-User Computing IT Infrastructure Data Protection VMware Private Cloud Infrastructure Networking Information and Risk Management mobile VMworld software-defined data center software-defined storage Airwatch hybrid cloud SDDC NSX SDS Enterprise Mobility

BYOA: Bring Your Own Authentication

Most people who use IT or Internet applications would agree that the current username/password mode of authentication is cumbersome, ineffective, and obsolete. According to ESG research, 55% of information security professionals working at enterprise organizations (i.e., more than 1,000 employees) believe that username/password authentication should be completely eliminated or relegated to non-business critical applications only.

Topics: Cloud Computing Microsoft End-User Computing Private Cloud Infrastructure Information and Risk Management mobile Security and Privacy google Lenovo multi-factor authentication ARM RSA Security Public Cloud Service

The Apple and IBM Partnership

IBM’s announcement on July 15 2014 that they are entering into a global partnership with Apple to transform enterprise mobility has both substance and spin.

The significance of this announcement stems from the enterprise level security, lifecycle support, and integration that IBM is bringing to iOS. IBM’s MaaS360 brings comprehensive mobile device management to bear so users will have a highly secure workplace container for enterprise content. IBM and Apple are also addressing iOS lifecycle concerns. IBM will offer a managed service whereby Apple provides IBM with a beta version of the upcoming iOS release and IBM will test and remediate issues for iOS applications. This way, when Apple suggests that a user upgrade to the latest version of iOS, an enterprise can avoid the potential for broken applications. IBM will also extend BlueMix so that it supports the 4,000 APIs of Apple’s iOS 8 (BlueMix Mobile for iOS). This brings enterprise scale to Apple-based mobile environments.

Topics: IBM Apple Application Development & Deployment Enterprise Software mobile

Enterprise Mobility and the Cloud highlight Microsoft TechEd Conference

This year's TechEd conference was enlightening in Microsoft's approach to the topic of mobile security. The core message of endpoint device flexibility and security was simple, but the breadth of Microsoft's coverage is underestimated. For example, Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite includes layered protection with identity management, device management, application protection, and file rights management for $4 per month per user for up to five devices.

Topics: Cloud Computing End-User Computing Endpoint & Application Virtualization Private Cloud Infrastructure mobile Public Cloud Service

Desktops and Apps On the Go

I still remember the day I had to feed the PC with 20+ 3.5” disks to load it up with Windows 95. The ultimate result of the install was fantastic for time, but the process was like watching paint dry! I didn’t have to worry much about laptops, and cell phones were just beginning to take hold…but I did carry a beeper. Wow have times dramatically changed. I am headed off to attend Citrix Synergy and Microsoft TechEd with a sharp focus on:

  1. The choices businesses have with alternative desktop and application delivery models. Which use cases they may map to and how aggressive (or not) IT is planning and adopting new delivery models.
  2. Determining how critical heterogeneous device support may be becoming and the different approaches Citrix and Microsoft may take in a world where Apple-, Google-, and Microsoft-based devices are sprinkled throughout most businesses.
  3. The criticality of an app store. The app store works extremely well for consumers, but are businesses looking for the same experience? And, if so, how can they apply it to their unique businesses?
  4. Potential new application development trends. I’m curious to see if businesses are looking closer at web designed apps, mobile apps, Windows apps, etc., and which development tools they are using to create the new generation of applications.
  5. Device management. MDM (mobile device management) and MAM (mobile application management) sure seem to capture a lot of market and investor attention, but are these quickly becoming commoditized or are they true differentiators in the market?

I have my theories on all of these, and I'm excited to spend some seat time with the folks at Citrix and Microsoft as well as end-user attendees to see how they are prioritizing mobile workspaces and what each of these companies has in store. Please keep checking in to my blog and follow me on twitter (@markbowker) to keep track of real-time information we may glean from these events.

Topics: End-User Computing Endpoint & Application Virtualization mobile applications