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Mobility: Balancing access against management

Sheila Lam | March 22, 2012
With a mobile penetration rate of over 200 percent, Hong Kong is an active and vibrant mobile market.

Windows Phone is also being looked at but Blumberg admitted that CLP would wait and see for greater adoption and wider application development support before widening support for that platform.

Internally, iPhone and Android are supported, but Blumberg admitted it's not easy determining which platforms to support. "It's easy to say in Hong Kong that at first we will support just iPhone but you look at India for example and it's almost all Blackberry there," he noted. "Also it's very hard to get a clear technology roadmap from Apple, Google, and even Microsoft these days--almost everyone is focusing on the consumer first and enterprise a distant second."

Enabling BYOD

CLP also operates a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy, where staff can request to have their personal device connected to the corporate systems such as e-mail and have IT support the management of that device.

There is a comprehensive mobile device management platform that applies security and policies to all devices that connect to the corporate network depending on risk levels and functionality. All users have to agree to a baseline level of security requirements which are applied to the devices.

These include agreeing to IT being allowed to remote wipe the device if required, as well as re-boot devices and remote monitoring. "BYOD is a good option for staff that are not given a company device and allows them to leverage their personal device for work while getting IT to secure, support and back up their data," Blumberg said.

The planning for this was exhaustive and included HR, finance and senior leadership input to address Issue, such as governance around downloading of apps--in what circumstances is that application a work-related task versus for personal? Do all apps need to be corporate-approved? Can users claim expense on downloading apps?

Plus there are the risks of users having content that breach intellectual property rights. "All these scenarios need to be thought through and the resulting guidelines need to be carefully communicated to staff and signed off before devices are supported," said Blumberg.

Additional reporting by Chee-Sing Chan and Teresa Leung

 

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