The Silicon Review
The conventional office setup is rapidly changing. The “New Normal” is blurring the lines between being “on the clock” or off, and between being in the office or out. The contemporary workplace also now includes both remote workers, based locally, who look to embrace the desired work/ life balance, and of workers based around the globe, who give employers an opportunity to tap into the international talent pool. But with that type of dispersed workforce comes additional risk. The downstream impact is that IT and Security teams are now increasingly challenged to find ways to securely enable access to all the necessary email, files, data and applications employees need to get the job done.
The common - but both outdated and expensive - approach is to purchase additional mobile devices for all remote and Work From Home (WFH) employees– yet that only offers a means of separating work data from personal data, it does nothing for security. To truly achieve the protection needed to allow the security team to sleep at night, Mobile Device Mgmt (MDM), Mobile Application Mgmt (MAM), Anti- Virus (AV), and Mobile Threat Detection (MTD) would also need to be purchased, installed and maintained. That means numerous products from numerous vendors all eating away at budget, time and resources.
But with the vast majority of employees owning their own, more than capable smart device, why would companies consider going through that extra effort ? After all, Employees do not want to carry multiple devices and employers do not want or need the extra expenditures. Instead, companies and government agencies should consider utilizing a security solution that works equally effectively on corporate owned (COPE) devices as it does on personally owned (BYOD) devices – A solution that includes all the tools necessary to secure all work related data needed, all contained in a single workspace!
For an organization to truly transform to the “New Normal”, BYOD can and should be embraced. Companies and government agencies that allow their employees to use personal (BYOD) devices to access work related email, files, data and apps, realize greater utilization, lower costs and increased productivity. However, if BYOD is adopted while still using the outdated and intrusive mobility solutions most companies continue to rely on today, it can also present HR and Compliance issues around personal privacy and data protection regulations.
The better approach for organizations who are looking to truly transform and modernize their digital/cyber strategies, is to utilize solutions from SyncDog to prepare for, and be compliant with, the growing demands and expectations of the contemporary workforce. SyncDog’s primary goal from the onset was to offer a highly secure solution that truly focuses on further enabling the mobile worker while at the same time respecting the personal privacy regulations being implemented around the globe. Traditional device-centric security approaches, like MDM/ EMM, aim to limit access, and to control and monitor usage - which almost universally inhibits the end-users from having the data they need to get the job done.
SyncDog’s Data- Centric approach uses FIPS 140-2 Certified 256-bit encryption to ensure corporate data is always protected – in Transit, in Use, and at Rest. Additionally, SyncDog’s Trusted Mobile Workspace (TMW) creates a second persona on any device which completely separates personal use of data and applications from work related use of data and applications. This enables the employer to allow more extensive access to email, data, files and apps while at the same time offering full tracking and auditability of that access. In a sense, the device no longer matters – whether Android or iOS, Corporate Owned or Personally owned (BYOD), Managed or Unmanaged, On-line or Off-line – The data and access is always secure. From here on out, carrying two or more devices will be a thing of the past.
Founded in 2013, SyncDog is an enterprise security solution provider based in Reston, Virginia.
In conversation with Brian Egenrieder, CRO of SyncDog
Q. Explain your company’s successful journey till date
SyncDog saw the opportunity to be a “disrupter” in the mobility space and so it set out from day 1 to make a difference. Just as Amazon focused on creating a better user experience for the shopper, and as Uber realized that the taxi industry focused more on the cab company than it did the rider – SyncDog realized that the mobility industry focused more on preventative measures than it did on further enabling mobile users – securely. The SyncDog mission begins there. From day one, we started building a solution that brought more functionality to mobile devices, and mobile employees. This allowed greater access to data and removed the need for intrusive components to be installed on the devices that impose on the privacy of the device owner. Most importantly, our solution offers the IT and Security teams granular control of who can access company/ government data, when they access it, what can be done with it when they do, and full logging of that information for reporting and auditing of that information. The build-out was complicated and took some time, but now that product is in the market, the response has been extremely positive. Our momentum is further bolstered by the Security and IT teams realizing, and now reacting to, the increasing vulnerabilities of the standard approaches to mobility. Finance teams are realizing the high costs of buying, provisioning, maintaining, and recouping mobile devices and data plans for employees. HR, Legal and compliance teams are understanding the need to protect the company data being accessed, the need to prove how, when and by whom that data is being utilized, and the need to prove that the company isn’t overreaching when it comes to personal privacy. Most importantly, the employees themselves are realizing that they can get their jobs done no matter where they are, no matter what device(s) they have on hand, and that their personal device can be safely used for work and private matters without concern of the two overlapping - and these issues are not unique to a given region as they are being confronted across the globe. As a result, SyncDog is building partnerships and distribution channels in strategic markets in the US, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, which is the foundation for its growth.
Q. What motivated you to reinvent enterprise network security services?
According to March 2020 Mobile Threat report by MacAfee, there were 35 Million mobile threats detected in the final three months of 2019 – a 40% increase from 2018. It’s clear that the conventional approaches to mobile security were not effective when SyncDog got its start and it’s even more clear that the problem is only getting worse. The standard setup of using MDM/EMM solutions to enforce password policies and other basic security measures are falling way short of protecting corporate and government data when it is being accessed or stored on mobile devices – not to mention the personal privacy issues that are blatantly violated by mandating device and application profiles be installed on endpoints that are owned by the employees themselves (BYOD).
Q. With any mobile device, employee or company-owned, there are risks associated with a loss of control. It can be used on a questionable wireless connection. How do you help your clients with this issue?
Mobile devices are vulnerable and cyber criminals are taking advantage of it, as proven by the very significant increase in the number of threats detected year-over-year. The Achilles heel of MDM/ EMM solutions, Anti- Virus, Mobile threat Detection, and Anti-phishing solutions is that they are always at least one step behind – always playing catch up to the methods and strategies used by bad actors to illicitly access sensitive or proprietary company and government data. Those solutions can only build up their defenses after learning of new threats – which means the new threat has already hit someone, some company, some government agency or all of the above. SyncDog takes an entirely different, next-generation type approach. SyncDog’s Trusted Mobile Workspace separates and isolates corporate and government data from the device itself and then uses FIPS 140-2 CERTIFIED encryption to protect the data while it’s being accessed, while it’s being stored on the device, and while it’s being transmitted to and from the device (In Use/ At Rest/In Transit). This means that even if the device is compromised, the sensitive work related email, data, or files that are on the device, or being utilized by it, can still not be accessed by anyone who is not intended to have access to it. SyncDog then offers hundreds of different configuration policies – and even a mechanism to create custom policies – that gives IT and security teams an infinite level of control over how that specific data, app, file, or email is accessed, by whom, when and even where it is accessed. Finally, that data is then easily removed, with certainty - and without impacting any/all personal data on the device - once that user or device no longer needs access to it.
Q. Bigger the network, Bigger the issue Do you think your services are ready to cater the needs of never-ending digital transformation?
SyncDog separates the data from the device, which means that the app offers the IT/ Security/ HR and other teams full and complete control over how the data is accessed, when, and where. Policies are easily established that further extend the flexibility of the solution to handle just about every one-off need or request our customers require. Moreover, the End- User / Customer also owns the data and crypto from end to end. The company has full control and auditability of the data and users throughout its usage. The end-users and data are also not susceptible to the limitations and well documented vulnerabilities of the device and operating systems. So “back door” efforts, or even legal efforts, to access the data against the will of the customer are also protected. No other solution available can say the same.
Q. Please talk about your recent strategic partnership with RAS Infotech.
Simply put, SyncDog is a global company because mobile devices are utilized extensively in every developed and even most developing countries around the world. The Middle East is a perfect example of this due to the nature of their major businesses, the global reach of those businesses, and the amount of data and finances needed to operate those businesses. RAS Infotech is a leading technology distributor in the Gulf States area, which specializes in high impact solutions that are disruptors to the status quo. In April of this year, RAS Infotech chose SyncDog’s Trusted Mobile Workspace as their next solution to add to their impressive portfolio due to the reliance on mobile devices in the Middle East. RAS Infotech has a multitude of resellers and partners in its distribution channel, representing the SyncDog solution to businesses of all shapes and sizes across the Gulf States.
Q. How efficient is your enterprise security expertise, and how do you keep your service standards up and running?
The SyncDog executive and Development teams have been in security and mobility field since mobility became a reality. We are continuously at the forefront of offering new approaches and technology, more advanced security and excellent usability. Our business is to be a disrupter to the current state of mobile security and a leader in protecting the personal privacy of mobile users.
Q. How do you market your services?
SyncDog offers its products through both direct and channel markets on a global scale. We promote our products through industry specialists, analysts, and trade publications and highlight that activity through various social media platforms.
Q. What are your future plans for the development of your company?
We are continuously exploring partnership opportunities to embed additional functionality into our Trusted Mobile Workspace and/or to include our workspace into other security and mobility solutions. M&A activity is also part of our growth and expansion plans. and/or to include our workspace into other security and mobility solutions. M&A activity is also part of our growth and expansion plans.
Meet the leader behind the success of SyncDog
Brian Egenrieder is a veteran sales strategist and executive leader with over 30 years of enterprise software experience. His experience in sales, sales management, business development, and marketing gives Brian a unique perspective in helping early-stage companies build from the ground up and also in helping established companies hone their strategies and processes to consistently increase revenue while controlling costs. He has vast experience in selling into the Fortune 500 / Global 2000 as well as the SMB markets, experience in both the private and public sectors, and experience in working in both domestic and foreign markets. He has been employed at a multitude of Software companies with a wide array of technology solutions, including IBM, webMethods, Deltek, Sterling Commerce, and others, giving Brian a broad spectrum of knowledge in high tech enterprise sales and marketing. He currently holds the position of Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) for the rapidly growing Mobile Security company SyncDog. He is helping them to continually increase their global footprint and change the way the world goes about getting work done on their mobile devices.