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VDI: An IT "Range War?"

According to Jeff Jennings, VP of Desktop Products and Solutions with VMware, the top three drivers for hosted desktop solutions are cost, management, and security. Improved security is especially useful in regulated industries like financial services and healthcare. With hosted desktop, security can be monitored more closely in the data center and virus threats reduced.

A item in Computerworld by Jim Duffy over at Network World sheds some interesting light on this problem. The article discusses “behavioral risks taken by employees in increasingly distributed and remote locations” and was commissioned by Cisco. The study, done by InsightExpress LLC, surveyed 2,000 employees and IT professionals in 10 countries focusing on security in the context of increasingly “untethered “work environments.

Among the key security-averse behaviors found: altering security settings for the purpose of bypassing IT policy and unauthorized use of applications. Interestingly with this latter, the article states that “seven out of 10 IT professionals said employee access of unauthorized applications and Web sites ultimately resulted in as many as half of their companies' data loss incidents. This belief was most common in the U.S. (74%) and India (79%). “

What that tells me is the following: there will be a tough battle shaping up between end users and IT departments over the locking down of computers. My former colleague Dan Kuznetsky had this to say in a blog about personalization vendor AppSense.

“Organizations have been asking for the best of both a locked down, encapsulated environment and the ability to offer staff members to personalize their work environment. They’ve learned that if the IT organization proceeds down a path towards a fully locked down environment, they often appear heavy handed and insensitive to staff members’ needs. In some organizations, this has lead to a “range war” between the IT department and the world at large. Everyone loses when the situation degenerates into open conflict.”

What are your thoughts about the likelihood of an IT “range war” as Dan described it. Post here or send me an email at tvalovic@1105media.com.

Posted by Tom Valovic on 10/26/2008 at 12:49 PM


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