BlackBerry Australia boss says BYOD trend is leading to a security conundrum

BlackBerry’s managing director for Australia and New Zealand, Matthew Ball, has told the Connect 2014 ICT conference in Melbourne.

In a panel discussion at the conference, Ball says supporting bring-your-own-device (BYOD) employee smartphones and tablets in the workplace is increasingly creating a security conundrum for businesses.

“We believe that IT is heading for a conundrum: How to support employee empowerment without giving up on security.”

Ball says for many businesses, the COPE (corporate owned personally enabled) model provides many businesses a better balance between mobility and security.

“BYOD has become a runaway train. It is often considered to be the only option, yet it has considerable downsides as well as upsides.

“Our view is that COPE brings that balance between enablement and protection – and we are seeing a shift among our client base both at an enterprise and government level towards COPE as the next phase of their mobility and security strategy (e.g. customers ATSB and Questas).

“IT departments need power and control; a robust IT strategy must enable but also protect.”

During the conference, Ball also highlighted BlackBerry’s ongoing investments in the embedded device/‘internet of things’ market, including in the auto market, through its QNX real-time operating system.

“We are also seeing a transition from mobile communications to true mobile computing – the ‘internet of things’ that we’ve been talking about in our industry for so long is here.

“Whilst we’re here chatting at Connect, my BlackBerry team is helping to power the back-end of F1 – but when you think about our QNX platform, in the future, we could be powering what’s under the bonnet as well.

“Cars are a great proof point for IOT – there are tens of millions of QNX Cars on the road already – but IOT is evolving from cars and moving further into smart appliances, and even mission-critical activity such as oil and gas exploration, as well as other industry applications.”

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