Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Blueprint Drawn for Mobile Device Security

Technology News writes a feature article on the efforts of the The Trusted Computing Group (TCG), an industry consortium backed by companies such as IBM, Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, VeriSign and Vodafone Group, to develop a set of specifications to make it simpler to secure such mobile phones.

Neil Strother at NPD Group said, "Right now, security is a major concern for companies that are using handheld devices to improve employee productivity." The Trusted Network Connect (TNC)standards "are designed to make cell phones more PC-like and in fact are similar to standards the group developed for desktop and laptop computers."

John Pescatore at Gartner said, "Security is important for cell phones because it is much more likely that a user will lose that device than a laptop or desktop computer." The standards are a step in the right direction, but a number of issues could curb its acceptance. Pescatore said, "Vendors have not always been in synch about what is the best way to offer security functions to handheld device users."

NPD Group's Strother added, "Security features will always take processing cycles from users' systems."
Gartner Group's Pescatore concluded "I don't expect TNC compliant products to begin shipping in volume until 2008. Eventually, the cell phone industry will adopt something to improve cell phone security, but I am not yet convinced that will be the TCG's work or something from another group."