Mobile security: iOS vs. Android vs. BlackBerry vs. Windows Phone

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As Samsung pushes to be 'enterprise class' and Microsoft gets serious with Windows Phone, which platform provides the security you need?

The BYOD phenomenon is old news, with support from most companies. For IT organizations, that means ensuring proper security and management over the mobile devices employees are likely to use. In the last year, Apple's iPhone and iPad have become the new corporate standards due to high user satisfaction and superior security capabilities. iOS 7 pushes Apple's management and security into new areas, including application management and licensing.

But Samsung has been aggressively promoting its SAFE (Samsung Approved for Enterprise) extensions to Android and its add-on Knox management APIs to bolster its reach into businesses wary of Google's historic lack of concern for security and the rampant malware on Android devices. SAFE targets the first concern. BlackBerry, once the IT darling due to its hundreds of security capabilities, is also trying to gain corporate respect with BlackBerry 10, which supports basic Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) policies out of the box (a first for BlackBerry), as well as a rich set of security features in its retooled BES 10 management server.

Then there's Windows Phone 8, the third version of Microsoft's attempt to deliver a popular smartphone OS. It's historically given little heed to security concerns, but Version 8 endeavors to satisfy basic business security concerns. And the forthcoming Windows Phone 8.1 increases its capabilities even further.

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