Real data security for all is now getting its start on mobile

Two approaches to data security are being pioneered on mobile, but over time will protect you anywhere

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Practically every IT organization is afraid of data leakage, of company data getting into unknown hands. Many have invested in complex, expensive tools like data loss prevention (DLP), but the leaks continue because DLP is simply ineffective. Now there's near-paranoia about cloud storage services and mobile devices as firehoses of information loss, despite the lack of evidence supporting those fears.

The industry continues to try find ways to let IT manage better data. Two approaches are emerging, which IT organizations will have to evaluate before placing more expensive bets on management tools — and shaping employee workflows in ways that could damage productivity.

One approach is application management, used by OS X, iOS, a variety of mobile management servers, and to some extent by Android. The other approach is direct content management, used by several managed close storage services, Microsoft's Intune and System Center management servers, and several mobile management servers.

Understanding application management

Application management uses APIs to regulate how applications access and share data, making them into containers. For example, file sharing can be disabled on a per-app basis or restricted to other apps managed by the same server (to keep the data within those managed apps).

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