Dell is building out its security capabilities as it continues its transformation into an enterprise IT solutions provider, with officials rolling out enhancements to its Dropbox as well as a business PC that includes high levels of encryption and malware prevention.
Growing its security portfolio has been a key focus of Dell as the now-private company has looked to expand beyond its PC-making roots and offer businesses a range of IT products, from servers and networking gear to storage devices, cloud solutions and software.
"The changing workforce means security can no longer be a function which closes off an organization to the outside world," Brett Hansen, executive director of client solutions software at Dell, wrote in a post on the company blog. "Instead, organizations are looking for solutions which allow them to take advantage of new mobility offerings, while also protecting them from new threats specifically targeting employees."
Dell and online storage vendor Dropbox in December 2013 announced a partnership that revolves around offering enterprises a cloud storage option that enables employees to access company data from anywhere while keeping control of the data with IT. The vendors integrated Dell Data Protection/Cloud Edition (CE) with Dropbox for Business, and Dell officials on June 26 announced enhancements to the offering.
Key among the improvements is a more clear separation of a company's business data and the personal information a user keeps in Dropbox. According to Dell officials, employees can access their personal and business accounts through the same application, but while the IT staff members can still manage, secure and encrypt company data, their actions won't impact the employee's personal account. There's also an automatic alert when business files are placed in a personal folder.
In addition, users will now be able to use Dropbox's one-click sharing capability without impacting file-level encryption, and they also will be able to open encrypted files through a Dropbox app on mobile devices that run either Google's Android operating system or Apple's iOS. IT staff also can remotely wipe business data from a device through the administration console.
Ensuring that organizations keep control of their corporate information in a world that is growing increasingly mobile is a key challenge, Hansen wrote.
"The explosion of data collection, mobile work devices and public cloud services is greatly improving productivity," he wrote. "However they have also created a new range of security concerns for IT departments. One of these headaches is how businesses can retain control over critical data while enabling employees to freely use mobile devices and public cloud services. One solution—which many businesses are increasingly turning to—is a single, turnkey solution which secures their devices and allows IT departments to retain ultimate control over their data."
The new Dropbox for Business capabilities will be available July 1, according to Dell.
Dell also introduced the OptiPlex 9030 All-in-One PC, which provides high-level encryption, authentication and malware prevention capabilities. Dell's Security Tools includes single sign-on and authentication management. Other new security features include secure credential storage through the Trusted Platform Module, lock slop support, a lockable port cover and intrusion detection on the chassis.
The OptiPlex 9030 is available now.
Dell officials also noted that the company's Hardware Crypto Accelerator—which makes hard drives found in Dell Latitude notebooks, OptiPlex desktops and Precision workstations into devices that can self-encrypt and are tamper-resistant—received the highest rating for system disk encryption by the Federal Information Processing Standards. The Level 3 standard means that by using Dell's Hardware Crypto Accelerator, businesses can not only detect a hacker trying to get into the hard drive, but also address the issue.