BlackBerry just launched a new service called Secure Work Space which allows enterprise users to securely manage their iOS or Android devices by separating work and personal stuff. This is aimed at corporate customers that allow their employees to use their own devices at work, be it an iPhone or an Android, which is already a growing trend. Businesses that are already using the BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 platform will now have the ability to add iOS or Android devices to their secure network at $99 per year per device.
According to David J. Smith, EVP, Enterprise Mobile Computing at BlackBerry, “Mobility is fundamentally transforming how we live and work. As our dependency on mobile solutions grows, and as a greater variety of mobile devices enter the workplace, the need for solutions to manage and secure these devices has never been greater.”
Secure Work Space was first announced last March and allows non-BlackBerry devices to access data and applications behind the corporate walls without passing through a VPN. Data from corporate email, documents, calendars, contacts and customized work applications are kept secure and separate. Toggling between work and personal mode is as easy as pressing the relevant icon. “It’s very easy and seamless to switch back and forth between your work information, which is confidential, and your personal information, which is also private to you and is not shared with your corporation.” said Smith. Employees won’t be able to copy a corporate message and paste it on their personal profile in the same way that malware that affects the personal profile won’t affect the corporate data.
BlackBerry decided to expand the use of its secure service to non-BlackBerry devices after clients said that there was an increase of employees who wanted to bring their own devices to work. This posed a potential security problem as a way to manage these devices was needed. Smith said that “This is all about embracing ‘bring your own device to work’. We’re seeing that most companies now have a heterogeneous environment where there are BlackBerrys but there are also iOS and Android devices in many cases. So, it makes sense that we would extend the BlackBerry security solution to these other devices — although it’s something we haven’t done in the past.”