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New IBM Software Helps Strengthen Security of Mobile Devices in the Workplace

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Increases in mobile exploits and concerns from security executives around BYOD adoption leads to enhanced security intelligence capabilities.

IBM has announced new software to help organizations develop mobile applications that are more secure by design. Now, clients can build security into the initial design of their mobile applications so that vulnerabilities will be detected early in the development process. Today's announcement further expands IBM's strategy to provide clients with a mobile platform that spans application development, integration, security and management.

With more than five billion mobile devices in the world - and only 2 billion computers - the shift to mobile devices as the primary form of connecting to corporate networks is increasing rapidly. Securing those devices is becoming a top priority for security executives and CIOs. As companies embrace the growing "Bring Your Own Device" (BYOD) trend, the need to secure the applications that run on these devices is becoming more critical. According to the 2011 IBM X-Force Trend and Risk Report, mobile exploits increased by 19 percent in 2011. In addition, according to the recently released data from the IBM Center for Applied Insights study, 55 percent of respondents cited mobile security as a primary technology concern over the next two years.

The rapid consumerization of mobile endpoints, applications and services has created the urgent need to secure corporate applications on employees' devices. With the latest release of the IBM Security AppScan portfolio, IBM now offers a robust application development security solution, allowing clients to integrate mobile application security testing throughout the application lifecycle.
"We are seeing increased demand from companies looking to extend their corporate applications to mobile devices," said Stuart Dross, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Cigital, Inc. "The ability to scan native and hybrid mobile applications for security vulnerabilities is a major step forward in securing sensitive data and mitigating security risks."

Security on the Go

Mobile applications represent a new threat target, since they carry a higher risk of attack compared to web application vulnerabilities. Attackers are increasingly focusing on mobile applications because many organizations are not aware of the security risks introduced by the most basic mobile applications. Beyond the traditional threats, for example, a hacker could perform a SQL injection or scripting attack on the applications. Mobile applications also come under attack from malware and phishing, or scanning QR codes with malicious scripts. Additionally, mobile applications have vulnerabilities specific to mobile devices because they often store sensitive data that can be leaked to malicious applications. This data, once stored locally, typically is outside the protection of the corporate security programs. The new AppScan analysis capabilities will find these vulnerabilities to help developers build more secure mobile applications.

“Providing clients with the ability to scan mobile applications for vulnerabilities--including applications developed in-house and outsourced is the next step of our mobile strategy," said Marc van Zadelhoff, vice president of Strategy and Product Management, IBM Security Systems." With more than 120,000 of our own employees accessing IBM's network through mobile devices, we have had to focus heavily on developing a way for employees to work safely and securely."

Mobilizing the Workforce

With today's announcement, IBM extends its market leading static application security testing to native Android applications, which allows clients to conduct their own testing for mobile applications. In the past, for mobile application security testing to be done, clients would have to send their applications and software IP (Intellectual Property) to an offsite vendor to test for vulnerabilities. This approach doesn't scale and the response time is too slow, as mobile applications undergo constant revisions and updates. Organizations need to address mobile application security testing in-house early in the software development life cycle.

In addition to the mobile application testing capabilities, there are significant new capabilities from which customers can benefit:

  • Integration with IBM's QRadar Security Intelligence Platform allows for increased Security Intelligence when an application is moved into production. By correlating known application vulnerabilities with user and network activity, QRadar can automatically raise or lower the priority score of
    security incidents.
  • A new Cross Site Scripting (XSS) analyzer which uses a learning mode to quickly evaluate millions of potential tests from less than 20 core tests.
    This new XSS analyzer finds more XSS vulnerabilities faster than any previous version of AppScan.
  • New static analysis capabilities help companies adopt broad application security practices through simplified on-boarding of applications
    and empowering non-security specialists to test faster than with prior releases.
  • Predefined and customizable templates that provide development teams the ability to quickly focus on a rule set prioritized by their security
    teams,helping corporations focus on key issues for them across their organization.

In addition to the QRadar integration, AppScan offers integration points with IBM Security Network IPS and IBM Security SiteProtector, and is a regular complement sold with IBM Guardium and IBM Security Access Management solutions for end-to-end application security. The approach is to provide a comprehensive and integrated security framework for applications across the development and production lifecycle.
IBM has a broad portfolio of mobile security solutions, ranging from helping secure data on the device, to running safer mobile applications. IBM has been steadily investing in the mobile space for more than a decade, both organically and through acquisitions, building a complete portfolio of software and services that delivers enterprise-ready mobility for clients.
IBM Security AppScan will be generally available this quarter.

IBM Security

IBM's security portfolio provides the security intelligence to help organizations holistically protect their people, data, applications and infrastructure. IBM offers solutions for identity and access management, security information and event management, database security, application development, risk management, endpoint management, network security and more. IBM operates the world's broadest security research and development organization and delivery organization. This comprises nine security operations centers, nine IBM Research centers, 11 software security development labs and an Institute for Advanced Security with chapters in the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific. IBM monitors 13 billion security events per day in more than 130 countries and holds more than 3,000 security patents.

For more information on IBM security, please visit: www.ibm.com/security.

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider, helping clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM's hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently, and securely. IBM's breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM's legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity, and service.

For more information, visit: www.ibm.com.

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