Dell unveils BYOD-focused mobility product plans

'Bring Your Own Device' strategy include per-app VPN controls

Dell today unveiled enterprise mobility software for Google Android or Apple iOS that supports employee "bring your own device" use by selectively applying VPN controls only to the corporate apps on the device, not the employee's personal apps.

The Secure Mobile Access 11.0 with Mobile Connect App that provides this style of BYOD control is in beta, and Dell expects it to ship by mid-year, according to Jane Wasson, senior product manager at Dell SonicWALL. In addition to Android and iOS, Dell is looking at adding Windows mobile platform as well in the future. The Dell mobility software requires the SonicWALL E-Series class firewalls to support the selective app-based VPN connections for mobile devices. She says this approach allows the enterprise IT manager to manage and secure the important corporate apps without interfering in the use of the employees’ personal apps.

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“This allows for customizable mobile policies and auditing,” said Wasson, adding it offers the IT department using Dell SonicWALL a path to managing BYOD devices. Secure Mobile Access 11.0 with Mobile Connect App will be offered free to existing customers of the SonicWall E-Class appliance (appliance pricing for new customers starts at $3,500).

Jay Terrell, chief technology officer for Fulton County in Georgia, is a SonicWALL customer that will be looking into this BYOD mobility approach as the county government moves forward with its mobile strategy. At present, Fulton County has just begun migrating off corporate-issued BlackBerry devices to primarily Android use. In the past, the county has allowed some BYOD use if the employee consents to use AirWatch mobile device management software.

BYOD holds a lot of appeal, especially because employees themselves “don’t want to carry two phones,” Terrell concluded.

Ellen Messmer is senior editor at Network World, an IDG website, where she covers news and technology trends related to information security. Twitter: MessmerE. E-mail: emessmer@nww.com

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