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Mobile Device Vulnerability Management Flagged as Top Concern for Security Professionals in 2012

April 2, 2012

Columbia, MD

Nearly 70 percent of security pros at RSA Conference admit they have no way of identifying known mobile device vulnerabilities on their network

New findings from a Tenable Network Security study have revealed that mobile device vulnerability management is a top concern for security professionals for the next 12 to 15 months. According to the study, nearly 70 percent of attendees surveyed at the RSA Conference 2012 said mobile device vulnerability management is 'very important' when compared with other security initiatives. That's not surprising considering 68 percent of respondents said they currently have no way of identifying known mobile device vulnerabilities that could be affecting their network.

"Mobile devices add an entirely new level of complexity to an organization, but security too often takes a back seat to convenience," said Ron Gula, CEO and CTO of Tenable Network Security. "Although the transient nature of mobile devices presents a unique challenge, organizations can achieve greater control by regularly scanning for vulnerabilities and monitoring the information that comes on and off their network."

Increasing Urgency to Lock Down Mobile Devices

Nearly all survey respondents said mobile devices present a security threat to their business, yet 67 percent said they either have no controls in place for mobile device usage on their network, or employees simply ignore existing mobile device usage policies. 

All participants expect their businesses to increase their mobile device usage in 2012. As a result, organizations' security budgets, in addition to their attention, are turning to mobile device security.  Nearly half (44 percent) of attendees surveyed said their company planned to invest $50,000 to $100,000 in mobile device security over the next 12 to 15 months. Another 33 percent said their organization will invest $15,000 to $50,000.

"With the proliferation of enterprise mobility, the ability to keep track of these devices and understand how they impact your network and pose new security risks is critical," Gula said. "Mobile device security needs to be a top priority, especially considering the majority of the mobile workforce will circumvent mobility policies in order to do their jobs."  

Protecting Customer Data is Key

According to the study, protecting sensitive customer data is the top goal for security professionals when it comes to mobile device security. Forty-seven percent of respondents listed 'protecting sensitive customer data' as the most important reason to deploy technology that identifies known mobile device vulnerabilities for devices attached to their network. Nearly half (46 percent) listed 'data leakage' as the top concern when a mobile device is lost, stolen, or hacked.

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