One technology or feature that we all need to understand better is remote wipe. With so much of our business and private lives now residing on smartphones, PDAs, laptops and netbooks, it is vital that we have a method of remotely wiping a lost or stolen device containing personal, private or commercial data. Most business-centric phones, such as the BlackBerry and Nokia E-series units, ship with a remote wipe feature, and Apple has recently added this to its iPhone too. Microsoft is offering a similar service for Windows Mobile phones via its My Phone service, but laptop and netbook users will have to look to third-party software vendors, such as Absolute Software, for a similar solution.
Organisations should look to the IT department for an enforceable policy
There are several ways in which organisations and individuals can protect data and information on the move, with encryption and passwords being the most obvious. Laptop computers, mobile phones, and memory sticks can all be protected with passwords at the device level, and yet very few organisations impose this basic level of protection through an enforceable policy. A page in the staff handbook or company Intranet is not, in my opinion, a realistic way of enforcing any kind of corporate policy, and so business managers must look to the IT department for support and assistance.
Richard Edwards is an analyst with Ovum.
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