Security and IT asset management go hand in hand. Mobility, cloud computing and virtualization complicate them both. Mobility and cloud put more software outside the traditional network perimeter. Virtualization balloons the instances of licensed software.
Most organizations have software running both inside traditional network firewalls and outside on devices connected over wireless links. These hybrid infrastructures present challenges to both security and software asset management. From a security standpoint, mobile devices share many of the same threats that desktop computers confront. But they also bring threat vectors of their own, such as data exfiltration from unauthorized or nonquarantined applications, mobile malware and loss of the device itself.
From a software asset management standpoint, mobile devices amplify the possibility of problems with license management, such as having more copies than needed or more than the enterprise is authorized to have under a volume license agreement.
The past year has produced sensational news of data losses, network penetration and malware implanted using social engineering techniques. For many, the case of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden made real the insider threat.