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2017: a defining year for mobile security

2017: a defining year for mobile security

1400 934 Joel Windels

For every successful technology of today, each one was initially a product without a market. That includes milestones like the famous Bill Gates claim of having a PC in every home, back when there was practically no such thing as a consumer computer market, or when pricey airline tickets were first sold to the public.

It was certainly the case when ScanSafe built the first cloud secure web gateway (SWG) product in the early 2000s, offering what was effectively a great idea but began life without an existing market to sell to. The ScanSafe team essentially had to create one from scratch. As the concept took hold and more businesses adopted SWGs, momentum started to develop and by 2010 it was difficult to find a single enterprise that hadn’t implemented some kind of solution.

Along the way, analysts like Gartner marked various moments throughout the market’s growth, releasing research covering the sector and eventually publishing a Magic Quadrant to cement the maturity of the SWG market. It was here to stay, and ScanSafe were leading it.

Fast forward half a decade and the leadership team from ScanSafe has built Wandera, the first gateway security solution designed specifically for mobile. Once again, the plan would be to carve out a new market with an innovative product, designed to meet the needs of an increasingly mobile workplace.

Much like it was for SWGs a decade ago, 2017 has been an important year for the mobile security sector. Significant research has been published by analysts like Gartner and IDC, underlining the growing investment that enterprises are placing in mobile security.

In Q3 2017, Gartner released its Market Guide on Mobile Threat Defense, a follow-up to a similar report in 2016. In it, the authors indicate that ‘the mobile threat defense (MTD) market is growing in terms of adoption” and that mobile malware is growing in importance – citing three trends in threat growth as evidence of the mounting concern.

The signs are clear that mobile threats can no longer be ignored. Security and risk management leaders must familiarize themselves with mobile threat defense solutions and plan to gradually integrate them to mitigate mobile risks.

Gartner Market Guide for Mobile Threat Defense Solutions, 2017

Read the full Gartner report

Less than two months after the Market Guide’s publication, the IDC MarketScape for Mobile Threat Management Vendor Comparison 2017 was released. This report, while using slightly different terminology, is assessing the same mobile security space.

We believe that its findings echo a similar sentiment to Gartner. Half of all U.S. enterprises and SMBs have now deployed some form of mobile device security solution, and an additional third not using MTM today plan to deploy this technology in the future.

IDC sees the mobile threat management market gaining momentum as more enterprises decide that EMM/MDM and native sandboxing and segmentation on mobile operating systems (OSs) are not enough to meet overall mobile threat management needs. 

-IDC MarketScape for Mobile Threat Management Vendor Comparison 2017

Download the IDC MarketScape 2017

The report also suggests that compliance requirements are a major part of the drive a lot of MTM buying decisions, with GDPR on the near horizon.

Combined, research like this speaks volumes about the direction mobile security is taking. In the context of a market busy with investment and M&A activity – Wandera raised $27m in its own series C funding earlier this year – it’s clear that MTD is coming of age, and is more important than ever.

The time has come for organizations to think very seriously about their own mobile security strategies, and continue to implement technologies that will ensure compliance and help secure an increasingly mobile workforce.

Gartner recognition

Gartner acknowledges Wandera in its 2017 Market Guide for Mobile Threat Defense

Read the report