Ten years ago, mobility wasn’t so common and users were using mainly desktop computers for their daily needs and operations. Internet access for individuals wasn’t so common and people didn’t even hear anything about social networking. They had mobile phones for their needs to communicate with other people.
Today, Internet is everywhere and people have more intelligent mobile devices like smartphones, PDAs and table PCs. They prefer to stay connected with entire world via social networking. In corporate world, companies prefer to hand out mobile devices and laptop PCs, instead of desktop PCs and desk phones in order to increase the mobility and productivity of their employees. And the dilemma of IT starts at that point.
IT departments are always under the huge pressure of information security threads. Managing the IT environment and applying security policies were definitely much easier in the past due to the lower level of technology and mobility. Even restricting Internet access for corporate users was a common and normal approach for IT departments.
Today, IT departments should provide mobility and a full Internet access for every user in order to increase their productivity, connectivity and creativity in a market with strong global competition. Meanwhile they should also protect the corporate assets against security attacks and failures.
The easiest way IT departments may chose is continuing to use the traditional approach and locking down the user PCs. But, it doesn’t work well anymore and doesn’t meet the needs of today’s business. For the right solution, IT departments should first change their mindset and approach. The corporate PC users in the past were not so familiar with the PC. However, we started working with new generations today and they are very capable of using PCs and to accessing information on the Internet. Restricting Internet access and locking down PCs mean blocking potentials and contributions of those users for the business.
Of course, managing security and information assets is crucial for every corporate. IT departments should focus on the backend systems and the corporate infrastructure in order to increase the security level of the company. Increasing the awareness level of the corporate users and sharing the responsibility with them are one of the critical points. IT departments should follow and evaluate the new solutions and technologies in order to provide the best collaboration environment for their users, thus users may prefer corporate platforms, which may also be accessible from the Internet. If IT encourages and increases the level of corporate collaboration and social networking on corporate systems, the level of individual contribution starts decreasing. That means, users start preferring to keep the corporate and critical data on corporate systems and servers instead of their local disks. That makes the data easily accessible and reusable for corporate users under the protection of corporate policies.