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ForeScout and AirWatch Tackle BYOD Together

Two network management companies have teamed up to create an approach that lets customers combine network access with mobile device management (MDM). The integration of AirWatch's MDM with ForeScout's network access control (NAC) product, CounterACT, will be handled through a ForeScout add-on module. The goal is to expedite set-up of bring-your-own-device programs.

According to Chris Hazelton, a research director at 451 Research, organizations are seeking an integrated approach to provide network access to users who want to work from their own mobile devices while also providing network administrators with visibility into the settings and activities of those devices. "The combination of NAC with MDM technologies offers organizations the means to easily identify who and what type of device is connecting to the enterprise, to automatically enroll and monitor roles-based controls for any device and user, and to secure the movement of corporate data across smartphones and tablets," he said.

The combined offering promises a number of functions:

  • The ability to detect unmanaged devices in real-time and automatically determine whether they should be allowed, blocked, limited, registered as a guest, segregated, or inspected for network policy compliance;
  • Automated installation of an AirWatch agent on user devices through a self-enrollment process;
  • Detection of jail-broken iOS devices and rooted Android devices with the means to negate or limit access;
  • Reassessment of device compliance every time it tries to connect to the wireless network;
  • Configuration and management of devices "over the air" to provision access to email, Wi-Fi, VPN, and applications;
  • Enforcement of passcode policies and encryption to protect sensitive data;
  • App blacklisting and device feature restriction;
  • Remote location, locking, and full or selective wipe of lost or stolen devices;
  • Compliance checking at the device and network level with automated response for defined events and contextual changes; and
  • Unified reporting for all user devices, including PCs, smartphones, tablets, and laptops through CounterACT.

The ForeScout integration module is expected by March 1, 2013. In a quantity of 1,000 licenses or more, it will be priced at $18 per device for a perpetual license.

ForeScout's education customers have included Utah's Cache County School District and Sutton Valence School in the United Kingdom. AirWatch's education customers have included Brunswick County Schools in North Carolina, Georgia's DeKalb County School System, and California's Coachella Valley Unified School District.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.