Today was yet another big day for Apple fans. Since WWDC back in June, consumers have been excited about many of the new features coming in iOS8. I was first excited about “Continuity” and the ability to connect my iPhone and my Mac, but after watching today’s keynote there are many new technologies and features that I cant wait to get my hands on. There was a lot of excitement (even from my kitchen stool) around iPhone 6, iOS8 and the build up to Apple Pay and Apple Watch.
Some people have been keen to check out the new health dashboard app that will allow you to connect fitness apps, track your calories, manage your weight, track how well you sleep and monitor your heat rate. But will your rate soar and your sleep be deprived when you think about how your company will handle the security aspect of managing iOS8 devices?
The keynote didn’t cover a lot about the enterprise features of iOS8, but worry not! While the consumer enhancements were pretty significant, the enterprise changes impacting how companies manage and secure iOS devices won’t significantly impact your workday. You can relax and know that SAP has been working diligently to be sure we support iOS8 mobile device management capabilities immediately upon availability on September 17th.
When you look back over the last few iOS releases you’ll note that the enterprise continues to become more and more important to Apple. iOS7 brought us many great enterprise security capabilities and now iOS8 adds to that. Some improvements to the enterprise management features in iOS8 are worth noting for enterprise customers.
Mobile Device Management features:
- Administrators can disable users’ ability to locally erase, reset or wipe devices. This feature effectively closes the loop on the Device
- A new device management UI, both in device settings and during the enrollment process, makes understanding the impact of MDM easier and more transparent for users.
- New queries let administrators see the last time a device was backed up to iCloud so they know whether it’s safe to perform certain tasks.
- MDM enables IT staff to help users authenticate to enterprise apps using certificate-based single sign-on.
Other Security features:
- Expanded data protectionIn addition to Mail and third-party apps, the Calendar, Contacts, Reminders, Notes, and Messages apps as well as user credentials are protected with a passcode until after the device is unlocked following a reboot.
- Certificate-support for SSO
- S/MIME controls per message – S/MIME users can choose to sign and encrypt individual messages for greater control over the security of mail messages.
- Data management and content filtering – IT Admins can control which apps can open documents downloaded from enterprise domains using Safari. They can also set up rules for controlling which apps can open documents from iCloud Drive. A new networking framework in iOS 8 makes it possible for third-party networking developers to create powerful content-filtering tools.
- Always-on VPN will be available in iOS 8. Users won’t need to manually reconnect to their company’s VPN every time they need to access it.
As a vendor of mobile software to large enterprises, SAP sees first hand that an incredible percentage of companies are now support iOS as a corporate standard. Our customers are developing apps with SAP Mobile Platform, taking advantage of the 4000 APIs that Apple app developers can now leverage. And they’re also rolling out iOS devices and managing them with SAP Mobile Secure EMM solution. iOS has truly changed the way we do business. We’re living the iOS dream ourselves according to Michael Golz, CIO, SAP Americas. “At SAP we support more than 66,600 iPhones and iPads used by our employees worldwide. Our teams continue to offer the same support for deploying the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 as we have in the past. The SAP Mobile Secure portfolio will support all of the company’s devices as well as employees’ own devices. A top concern with deploying new devices is security, so it is imperative that our complete mobile portfolio is ready for the new iOS 8 on day one.”
Compatibility and Availability
Today, SAP announced that we target day-one support for the launch of iOS 8 and devices, including the newly launched iPhone 6. As part of this support, SAP Mobile Secure will support iOS 8 as soon as it becomes available on September 17th. Previous to the announcement today, the SAP Mobile Secure team has been testing MDM functionality on beta versions of iOS8. To date, all functions have worked successfully with the exception of an Access Control feature which will be corrected in a future software update. If you’re an SAP Mobile App Protection customer, iOS8 will be supported in an update planned in September. Customers using SAP Mobile App Protection are advised to have their end users remain on iOS7 until the update is released.
You can test drive SAP Mobile Secure today at www.sapmobilesecure.com.