Cloud-based security of mobile devices via Active Directory

Centrify announced DirectControl for Mobile, a cloud-based service lets enterprises centrally secure and manage smart phones and tablets using existing Active Directory infrastructure, skill sets and processes to enable deployment combined with scalability.

The company also today announced Centrify Express for Mobile, a free mobile security offering with no limit on the number of devices that can be supported.

Enterprises’ security requirements are growing more complex with the consumerization of IT trend and employees practicing “bring your own devices (BYOD)” within the workplace. Current Mobile Device Management (MDM) vendors deliver their functionality by forcing IT organizations to install additional infrastructure, learn new processes, and/or make intrusive changes to their IT environment.

DirectControl for Mobile allows organizations to quickly and securely bring large populations of mobile devices under management using automated self-enrollment without requiring IT staff to deploy additional infrastructure, implement changes in firewall configurations, learn new skill sets, or operate yet another management console.

The solution maximizes security and visibility through centralized management and reporting of enrolled devices and installed applications, and also through security policy enforcement of devices across the entire organization.

In today’s IT environments, mobile devices are typically accessing corporate information from outside of an organization’s network, as well as outside the scope of existing security infrastructure, thereby minimizing the visibility, control and policy that IT organizations can enforce on both the mobile user and the device. Unlike current MDM solutions, which cost a premium over a multi-year period, the DirectControl for Mobile solution is designed specifically to let IT departments manage and secure mobile devices irrespective if they are on the corporate network or not, and is available as both a paid subscription version and a free version called Centrify Express for Mobile. Both versions include the following features and benefits that provide IT staff with an easy-to-deploy, non-intrusive solution:

Active Directory and Group Policy-based device management. Centrify DirectControl for Mobile utilizes an organization’s on-premise Active Directory infrastructure and Group Policy-based management tools to easily enforce and update a variety of mobile security settings, lock or remotely wipe devices, and secure access to email, VPN and WiFi networks. Organizations can now achieve mobile device security with their existing technology investment, skill sets and processes without the hassle of deploying a complex new infrastructure and dealing with yet another “pane of glass” in the form of another standalone management console.

Cloud-based service. The Centrify Cloud Service seamlessly allows the on-premise Active Directory environment to easily manage mobile devices over a trusted, over-the-air connection, whether or not a device is connected to the corporate network, thereby making deployment simple and further eliminating the need for new infrastructure.

Unified platform for mobile devices, Mac OS X and more. Centrify is the industry’s only Active Directory integration solution that secures and manages not only iOS and Android devices, but also Mac OS X, UNIX and Linux systems, as well as web and enterprise applications.

Self-service and automation. Centrify DirectControl for Mobile quickly brings large populations of authorized devices under management with user self-service enrollment and automated configuration of each user’s authentication credentials, email, WiFi and VPN settings, thereby greatly reducing helpdesk volumes associated with mobile devices.

Inventory devices and even detect jail-broken devices. Centrify DirectControl for Mobile simplifies reporting of enrolled devices, installed applications and device update status across the entire organization, with the ability to detect and block enrollment of jail broken devices.

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