On Monday in Barcelona, Samsung unveiled Samsung KNOX, a native containerization solution for select Samsung smartphones and tablets, designed to separate personal and business content while tightly securing the enterprise data and applications. If you haven’t read the post “A Day in the Life with Samsung Knox: An Investment Banker’s Perspective” you should check it out for a great real life scenario focused on the business value of KNOX. But, as you well know, there are always two sides to any technology solution. One side is the value a technology brings to the business and the other is the cost and risk associated with that technology. And when it comes to mobile, that cost and risk is what has many an IT person tossing and turning and night.
Jamie’s IT counterpart, in particular, has historically had very good reason to toss and turn at night. Whether it is an investment banker, a surgeon or a case worker, the challenge has been getting these essential workers access to the highly sensitive data they require to perform at the highest level, while adhering to industry regulatory controls and data security requirements (pick your acronym – FISMA, SOX, PCI DSS, HIPAA, FIPS, etc.) enacted to protect that data.
Samsung KNOX is a tremendous step forward and is something both Jamie and her IT counterpart should be excited about. For Jamie it means IT does not fuss with her personal stuff, but she gets access to the information she needs from the hot new smartphone or tablet she actually wants to carry. For IT KNOX means a more secure version of Android with secure boot, government-grade encryption of data at rest and in transit, and the ability to completely isolate business content from personal content in a secure container.
While there are numerous containerization solution on the market today, KNOX is unique in that it is woven more deeply into the operating system by Samsung, providing a level of hardened security not possible without full control of the hardware, boot loader, OS and application stack. Samsung’s approach protects the device, the data on it, and the networks employees use to access corporate resources—all while giving IT administrators full, centralized visibility and control. Another great thing about KNOX is it is extensible, meaning enterprises can push their own applications into the secure environment and inherit that security.
Not only are Jamie and IT excited, Citrix is excited too. At Citrix we integrated with KNOX in a couple ways. First, our XenMobile MDM product serves as a remote management console to remotely establish and set policies for the KNOX container, push applications to the container, and remove that container and all the associated content when a device is decommissioned or an employee leaves the company with a device they own. Secondarily, Citrix’s mobile applications like Citrix Receiver, ShareFile, GoToMeeting and others can be pushed to, and secured within the KNOX container.
Jamie – go win some business. Thanks to Samsung KNOX (and Citrix), IT has your back.