Feds Pursue Uniform Approach To Device Management - InformationWeek
03:14 PM

Feds Pursue Uniform Approach To Device Management

Government starts process of reviewing mobile device management software on March 8, as agencies that issue smartphones and mobile apps hope for common tools to provision and secure them.

Mobile World Congress 2013: 9 Hot Gadgets
Mobile World Congress 2013: 9 Hot Gadgets
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
The federal government is making progress in plans to develop a government-wide approach to managing mobile devices and applications, according to federal CIO Steven VanRoekel.

VanRoekel, in a blog post, said responses to a government-issued "request for technical capabilities" are due March 8 from tech vendors with products and services geared to federal requirements.

The mobile device management (MDM) plan is tied to the Obama administration's Digital Government Strategy, which was introduced last May with a goal of making government information and services available "anytime, anywhere" in the form of mobile applications. To do that, federal agencies need tools to provision and secure devices, authenticate users and deploy apps.

The Digital Government Strategy requires agencies to "set up a government-wide mobile device management platform." The General Services Administration is taking the lead on the strategy and issued a request for technical capabilities in early February.

[ Wonder what VanRoekel sees as the biggest challenge to efficient government IT? See Federal CIO Q&A: Security, Sequestration And More. ]

Although adoption of MDM products and services is still in the early stages, the government has "a small window of opportunity to avoid fragmented buying across federal agencies and programs, and help shape this emerging space to meet the broadest needs," said VanRoekel. "As we adjust to this new digital world, we need to seize the opportunity to procure and manage devices, applications and data in smart, secure and affordable ways."

GSA's technical request focuses on three areas: MDM, mobile application management and mobile life-cycle management. The list is split into required and desired capabilities. Required capabilities include general security and privacy functions, device enrollment, data management and performance and compliance reporting. Security is also a priority for mobile application management, in addition to application deployment and a mobile app store. Mobile lifecycle management encompasses installation and operations support.

Technologies that strike a balance between security, cost and functionality will have the most value to the agencies, according to GSA's request. It cites an example of a user losing a mobile device and the device manager being able to enter the user's name, retrieve the device ID, disable it and notify the provider to terminate the service -- all from one interface.

Attend Interop Las Vegas, May 6-10, and attend the most thorough training on Apple Deployment at the NEW Mac & iOS IT Conference. Use Priority Code DIPR03 by March 9 to save up to $500 off the price of Conference Passes. Join us in Las Vegas for access to 125+ workshops and conference classes, 350+ exhibiting companies, and the latest technology. Register for Interop today!

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll