IBM, AT&T Team on Mobile Cloud Security

IBM and AT&T have teamed up on a mobile cloud security solution to secure devices, connectivity and data.

AT&T teams up on mobile cloud security

IBM and AT&T have teamed up to address mobile cloud security.

AT&T announced that in conjunction with IBM, the duo can deliver a scalable mobile cloud solution to help protect corporate data and apps. IBM and AT&T's new approach enables a workforce to be productive without compromising security and the mobile user experience.

The AT&T and IBM mobile cloud security solution will help customers secure the device, connectivity and data. It gives companies simple tools they can use to properly enable their growing mobile workforce. The reference architecture includes components from both companies, including IBM MobileFirst Protect, which helps organizations manage and control mobile devices, apps and documents. AT&T NetBond provides a secure, scalable network connection to IBM's Cloud infrastructure services, SoftLayer, while IBM Cloud, the SoftLayer infrastructure, secures public and private clouds for applications and data storage. Finally, AT&T Work Platform enables separate billing of business and personal charges for voice, messaging and data use on an employee’s personal handset.

"More employees are using mobile devices to be more productive. At the same time, data and apps are moving to the cloud. The changes are exciting, but security needs to be top-of-mind," said Steve McGaw, chief marketing officer for AT&T Business Solutions, in a statement. "Trusted collaborators like IBM are helping us better address changing business models. Together we're giving options to deliver highly secure mobile access to cloud apps and data."

The increasing use and value of mobile data has created a challenge for CIOs looking to connect customers, partners and employees across devices. The complexity of securing corporate data in this environment is even tougher. Cyber-criminals are increasingly targeting mobile apps, Internet connections and corporate networks. The AT&T Cybersecurity Insights report states that our experts have seen a 62 percent increase in DDoS attacks over past two years.

IBM research found that nearly half of all companies allocate no budget to securing the apps they develop. As threats evolve and grow, how businesses deliver a secure user experience and mobile access to apps must evolve as well.

"Balancing employees' need for convenience with security has become a challenge for CISOs and CIOs across the world," said Caleb Barlow, vice president of IBM Security, in a statement. "To help protect organizations, employees and data, IBM Security and AT&T are delivering a tested and easy to deploy set of complimentary tools. We’re giving enterprise mobile device users stable, private access to data and apps in the cloud. Together we're providing mobile users with simple, consistent and controlled cloud access. As a result, employees become more productive and corporations reduce complexity and stay focused on business."

Meanwhile, IBM recently announced new cloud security technology that helps protect organizations from risk associated with the increasing use of "bring your own" cloud apps at work.

Big Blue's new Cloud Security Enforcer gives companies visibility into all third-party cloud apps used by their employees, provides a secure way to access them, and enables companies to control which corporate data can and cannot be shared with the apps.

Cloud Security Enforcer helps companies address a potentially significant security exposure, as they currently only have visibility into a fraction of the cloud apps used by their workforce.

Indeed, new research from IBM found that one-third of employees at Fortune 1000 companies are sharing and uploading corporate data on third-party cloud apps. Employees today are increasingly engaging in risky practices on these tools, such as signing in with their personal email addresses, using weak passwords or re-using corporate log-in credentials.

IBM's study of more than a thousand Fortune 1000 employees showed that one out of every three employees is uploading and sharing corporate data to third-party cloud apps, often without the knowledge of their employer. With little or no visibility into these apps, companies have no awareness of the risky activities being performed on them, which the survey also uncovered.