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Secure containers put focus on mobile data protection

Some enterprise mobility management technologies can be pretty complex. Secure containers aim to fix that by focusing on mobile data protection.

There's no shortage of mobile devices in the enterprise -- or ways to manage and secure them.

The list of available technologies is long, and it includes mobile device management, virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and mobile application management, just to name a few.

VDI is the antithesis of mobility.

Purnima Padmanabhan,
COO, MokaFive Inc.

MokaFive Inc., a Redwood City, Calif.-based vendor that got its start in the desktop virtualization market, is one of several companies that offer a different approach: placing corporate data and applications into secure containers. End users can download the containers onto their smartphones and tablets and access their information, even offline.

Purnima Padmanabhan, MokaFive's chief operating officer, discussed the company's approach, the importance of mobile data protection and other enterprise mobility management challenges.

There are so many different ways of attacking mobility. How should businesses choose the right approach?

Purnima Padmanabhan: Where we have been getting traction is [by] offering a more unified approach … that can be leveraged across multiple scenarios and multiple devices. What you are trying to offer is a secure experience across all these devices.

What you want to secure ultimately is intellectual property. That's all you care about. If you can go with an approach that allows you to somehow Bubble Wrap your corporate data and apps and drop it on any device, now you have an approach that can be universally applied: connected devices, as well as disconnected devices; corporate devices. as well as BYO [bring your own] devices; desktops and laptops. Depending on the type of device, you just make sure that [employees] get the appropriate experience.

Why isn't traditional VDI a good fit for enterprise mobility management?

Padmanabhan: No. 1, from a tablet or phone, nobody wants to run a legacy Windows 7 or Windows 8 desktop. It is a very cumbersome experience. They want access to rich native apps that are truly designed for the type of device you have.

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No. 2, you've got huge cost -- bandwidth, network issues. No. 3, you're dead when you're offline. VDI is the antithesis of mobility.

How do you see the role of traditional Windows desktops changing as businesses become more mobile?

Padmanabhan: I don't see them going away. For all of the hoopla around alternative devices, they have been an add-on. They are not necessarily complete replacements of desktop devices. It is not the end of the PC era. The creation device is still some form of PC, and the consumption device can be a lot of these mobile devices.

What are the biggest challenges you see your customers facing as they try to embrace enterprise mobility management?

Padmanabhan: It doesn't have to be that complex. If you go with the device management approach, then definitely there is complexity. Containerization is a technology that can abstract you from a lot of the complexity. A secure container is just an app on your mobile device that encapsulates your corporate environment.

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