A guide to Content Filtering for mobile

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The challenges, trends and benefits of Content Filtering in a mobile-first environment

Mobility can be an incredible productivity driver however, it is not without its issues. The ease with which mobile devices can access networks, means they are becoming increasingly difficult to manage and control by enterprise IT departments, throwing up issues of shadow IT, data exfiltration and more.

This whitepaper explores benefits of Content Filtering in five main areas: shadow IT, security, productivity, legal considerations and expense management, analyzing the challenges, questions and considerations involved in implementing Content Filtering across a mobile fleet.

Introduction

According to research by Statcounter in 2016, mobile usage has now surpassed that of desktop and laptop. While the new age of mobility can be an incredible productivity driver – allowing employees to work effectively anytime, anywhere – work-assigned devices are also introducing rising levels of risk to the enterprise. Improperly managed handsets leave companies at risk of security issues, productivity losses, and exposed to potential litigation.

The ease with which mobile devices can access many disparate networks, both inside and outside of the office, means they are becoming increasingly difficult to manage and control by enterprise IT departments. Employees can easily access and download material which is not accessible within the corporate network, throwing up issues of shadow IT, data exfiltration and more.

However, the issue goes beyond technology administration. The ability for employees to access illegal and illicit content on corporate devices may generate a number of issues for both the human resources and legal departments.

Mobile devices are also inherently different to desktops and laptops. The crossover between personal and work usage is more blurred. Employees regularly use their work-assigned devices for recreational use and usually expect to be able to do so. Content Filtering is often viewed as a draconian solution, depriving employees of this freedom. The reality is that it can not only solve many of the most difficult mobile challenges facing enterprises today, but also that it provides benefits that might have otherwise been unforeseen by IT leaders.

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