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BYOD In Defense Department? Not In This Lifetime
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Jeff Pike
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Jeff Pike,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/7/2014 | 10:20:27 AM
Inevitable trend?
Interesting take on the BYOD argument - from my perspective, there are numerous examples where technology trends have started in the social environment before moving into civil industry and then migrating into the military. Mobile apps – just one great example of a development which has been driven by consumers – are starting to have an important impact on aerospace and defense as part of several government initiatives worldwide.

Taking mobility one step further, it's interesting to see how the BYOD trend may take hold in defense in the future. Is it unacceptable for security and data control reasons, or just another inevitable trend that defense needs to embrace for the future?

I agree that many defense departments or military institutions may shy away from such a trend due to security issues, data concerns and coordination problems and therefore it's unlikely that this will take hold in defense in the short term.

Defense departments are already talking BYOD and how such policies can be implemented effectively. Take the Australian Department of Defence, for example, which has already created a BYOD plan called 'corporate owner and personally enabled' (COPE), which will be supported by a Defense app store. And Dr. Guy Bunker, renowned network defense specialist and author of ENISA's key report on cloud computing, says that BYOD is "here to stay" as a strategy for enhancing military IT usability.

So I believe the answer is yes – BYOD is likely to happen in defense, but the route for doing needs to be progressive and selective in order to ensure optimal security.
Alison_Diana
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Alison_Diana,
User Rank: Author
3/31/2014 | 11:24:47 AM
Re: Not quite accurate
What many users don't realize is the risk they are taking when they use personal devices for work. It's really important for organizations to educate employees about the related governance and legal implications: For example, you could lose your phone or tablet if you're subpoenaed, and any embarassing personal pix intermingled with work docs will now be in lawyers' and/or law enforcement's hands. 
WKash
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WKash,
User Rank: Author
3/24/2014 | 10:42:52 PM
Re: Not quite accurate
Alison, you're right, the costs are high, in part because there's really the cost of supporting two approaches: Govt./Corp. Furnished Equipment and BYOD.  The BYOD approach is supposed to save money in essentially eliminating the equipment costs, but the hidden costs remain.
david.p.bates10.civ
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david.p.bates10.civ,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/24/2014 | 10:56:41 AM
MDM cost
That is one of the points that I am makeing @alison.  The cost of MDM is a sunk cost in DoD as the commands are field an MDM wheather it is a gov't device or not.....
Alison_Diana
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Alison_Diana,
User Rank: Author
3/21/2014 | 4:01:45 PM
Re: Not quite accurate
Whenever I speak to CIOs or IT execs about MDM, the biggest problem they cite isn't the technology. It's price. I remember talking to the CIO of a utility company about six months ago. His company was hesitant to roll out BYOD despite executives' demands because the cost to do it securely was really high. I can't recall the number he told me and don't want to speculate, but it was a big one! After our conversation he was off to speak to one of the bigger MDM developers, primarily to haggle on cost. Until that price dropped, he was unwilling to commit, no matter how noisy execs were. 

OTOH, it's hard to imagine execs will quietly comply with this edict from IT. I'd guess they'll use their personal devices to share data, access email, and do everything else they want to do. This "shadow BYOD" opens up a whole lot more security concerns -- and costs -- than even the most expensive MDM system. Are DoD employees more apt to obeying orders? I don't know.
Alison_Diana
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Alison_Diana,
User Rank: Author
3/21/2014 | 3:56:43 PM
Re: BYOD and HIPPAA
Thanks for bringing up the HIPAA point, @Sharron. I've spoken to several hospital CIOs who are piloting or planning to pilot text messaging systems to communicate with patients -- usually to schedule appointments, remind them about medicines and tests, and share info on their conditions. Meaningful Use means more healthcare providers will have to do this and many studies show most users, including older patients, like text messages. Healthcare providers had to find secure systems and developers obviously focused on this market, knowing there was going to be a big opportunity here. No doubt some of these companies will target defense and related organizations in the future. 
david.p.bates10.civ
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david.p.bates10.civ,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2014 | 2:33:23 PM
Re: Why bother with BYOD?
The big deal about a sperate device is $$$$.  Why not offer a government employee a stipend at the end of the fiscal year to suplement the cost of the IT equipment and not pay for the entire cost of the IT equipment?  I will answer, It would save the government money!!!  And it is not just the cost of the phone but the tablet and laptop as well.  Think about the cost saving that could be achieved from a total BYOD architecture.
david.p.bates10.civ
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david.p.bates10.civ,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2014 | 1:22:12 PM
Not quite accurate
I totally disagree with just the title of the article let alone some of the content. "BYOD In Defense Department? Not in this Lifetime" is an absurd statement! With technologies mentioned in the memo from DoD CIO such as MDM, MAS, and VDI there is a green field for integration into the DoD space. The memo also stated "As the technology matures and is proven to meet DoD security requirements for the mobility environment. DoD CIO will monitor and generate the necessary DoD implementation policies to support BYOD. In conjunction with the Digital Government Strategy, DoD will continue to evaluate BYOD options".  Well the technology has matured and is certainly a possible in this lifetime. Vendors such as Air-watch (MDM/MAS), which was procured by VMware and ZenPrise (MDM/MAS) owned by CITRIX, have technologies that are geared to support a BYOD integration into the DoD space. What was unfortunately not mentioned in the article was "DATA" and the security that can be gain with the positive control on DoD data. With the technologies that I mentioned it is capable of containerizing the data on the device and having positive control of the data meaning the data can be deleted at any time. And on another note, the cost of deploying an MDM/MAS solution in DoD is taking place now with a DoD issued devices so cost is not more expensive, which was alluded to by a previous post.
sharronstone
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sharronstone,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/25/2014 | 10:41:44 PM
BYOD and HIPPAA
The Federal Information Security Management Act creates some real challenges for BYOD implementation for government agencies and the military, but I think they can look at some of the solutions that healthcare has come up with to meet the data security challenges of the HIPAA requirements. Our hospital is a good example of this; as we are taking a HIPAA compliant texting API by Tigertext called TigerConnect, and putting it together with a secure email API and the Dropbox API to make a security app that all the staff and doctors will install on their phones and tablets to ensure HIPAA compliance and security. Government agencies may have to implement a similar program for their BYOD implementations. More info - http://developer.tigertext.com/
ekell
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ekell,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/16/2014 | 9:20:47 AM
Secure Apps
I hear what everyone is saying about having to have a secure device and I understand it if the intent is to process data using the stock apps for email or documents. However, most employees in the DoD and I'm sure other agencies just want access to email and don't need or want anything more on a mobile device. I don't understand why we can't create a secure, encrypted app that runs limited, stand alone functionalities that can't interface with anything else on the phone. The app can have its own password protection to open it and an ecrypted key or a vpn connection back to the serverside. For example, an email app that does not store anything on the phone but rather on the server side only. This doesn't seem that hard.
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