CIO: Sounds dangerous. What is the worst-case scenario?
Palen: The worst-case scenario involves apps that are truly a Trojan horse that slips through the cracks and becomes available on an iPhone or iPad that is connecting to back-end data, and then wreaks havoc on an enterprise by capturing keystrokes or credit card information.
But nobody is looking at this blindly. People are taking precautions to protect their data. And I believe Apple will provide more enterprise management capabilities in future releases.
CIO: Why isn't this stifling iPad enterprise adoption?
Palen: With the iPad, IT organizations are folding under pressure. They had taken such a hard stance with security, and now they're allowing iPads that really wouldn't have met their requirements 12 months ago. There's so much demand. They also see so many efficiencies that can be brought to bear [by the iPad] that they're willing to deal with the risks.
CIO: What are the work-arounds?
Palen: You're probably not going to wipe an executive's iPad. But one of the things that we do is integrate with Active Directory so that we know exactly who someone is in the organization. You can actually set up rules so that you could manage executives one way and other people a different way. You can also differentiate between a corporate device and an individually owned device.
We could do some things around VPN connections and not having apps residing on the device. Or we can have an icon that doesn't have data residing on the device. We can control the iPad from a data perspective rather than the app itself. There are workarounds.
CIO: Apple has tiptoed around the enterprise for years. What's it going to take to force Apple's hand?
Palen: When Apple starts to see large volumes of iPads selling into the enterprise, and these iPads are locked down and users won't be able to buy additional apps, that's when Apple will start making it available for me to manage these apps.
Read more about consumer in CIO's Consumer Drilldown.