Kyle: My favorite articles of 2018 (Notice the security theme!)

It’s been a blast covering the state of security and mobility this year; let’s see what progress 2019 brings!

I joined BrianMadden.com nearly halfway through this year. It’s been an eye-opening and brain-stuffing experience as I get up to speed on the EUC industry that many people have lived and breathed for years. As Jack loves to mention, my first week on the job involved flying down to Anaheim and covering Citrix Synergy. I’ve got a decent handle on the mobility and security aspects, but hope to grow my knowledge base in areas where I’m still lacking in 2019.

I’ve already written over 50 articles in my seven months here. To bring this year to a close, here are my favorite articles that I wrote in 2018.

Articles covering vendors

Speaking with the vendors and digging deeper into their new products to provide in-depth articles has been an interesting experience. It allows me the chance to familiarize myself with the existing products to understand whether the new product or update is worth anyone caring. Some of these involved simple phone call interviews, while others articles provided me a chance to visit vendor offices.

One of the first deep dives I did was around the Citrix Workspace Hub, which largely hit general availability this year. I jumped on calls with Gunnar Berger and Dane Young to ensure I came away with a thorough understanding. I also learned about Citrix’s past love of innovative ideas that don’t always make it to market. This article also marked the first time something I wrote made someone mad enough to email us!

Another thing I enjoyed was when Jack and I took a trip down to Palo Alto before Thanksgiving where we got to learn more about VMware’s latest EUC products and features. It was a full day of meetings that allowed us to ask about Mobile Flows functionality and the newer Workspace ONE Intelligent Hub. Additionally, we got more information around the brand-new Dell provisioning for Workspace ONE that uncovered some interesting aspects of this product few outside VMware likely knew about: no-touch restore and always up to date.

Other vendor-specific articles that I enjoyed researching and writing include meeting SimpleMDM, a smaller Apple MDM vendor, and covering Ping Identity at Identify 2018, their regional customer event.

Security-focused articles

Coming to work at BrianMadden.com was essentially my introduction to the EUC industry. With Jack being experienced in EMM and desktop virtualization, I was able to turn my focus to some deeper security and mobility topics, with the former already an interest of mine (granted from a largely consumer focus before).

I started out by researching and writing articles around security issues that caught Jack’s eyes in the past, but that he hadn’t yet found the time to look into (he was on his own for five months!). This started with digital voice assistants, relevant as Google, Amazon, and others work to gain enterprise acceptance. Data loss prevention is a big issue and we wanted to learn how difficult it is to for IT to manage each voice assistant, starting with Alexa for Business and continuing with Siri.

From there, I looked into how safe Chrome extensions and other browser extensions were since they kept popping up in the news as more extensions were found to either be outright malicious or collecting user data.

Data breaches remain frustratingly common, with news of Quora and Marriott breaches coming to light in just the past month with hundreds of millions of users affected. In August, I took a look at how users and organizations can more easily discover if their passwords have been compromised with Troy Hunt’s Pwned Passwords API. In the same article, I also looked at the 2017 NIST password regulations, which we feel could improve user experience, while simultaneously securing identity more effectively. 

In the more recent months, Jack and I have been researching the mobile security landscape. This started with how we should break down mobile security statistics and what mobile malware really is. Due to the different ways security vendors define “malware,” MitM attacks, and more, I started speaking with individual security vendors in an effort to learn about mobile security threats.

I started out with an article showing off publicly available data from Google and Lookout, which include data from both consumer and enterprise customers. More recently, I got to visit Wandera (praise be the centrally located TechTarget office) and speak with VP of product Michael Covington about corporate mobile security, which provided a locked-down, business-only view of mobile security.

Expect more mobile security articles in the near future; already have several other vendors I’m going to speak with on their available data.

Mini-hardware reviews

As Jack likes to say, “We’re a blog, we can write about what we want,” so occasionally we tried our hands at offering a review of hardware, most often devices we could acquire cheaply or already owned. When Jack was working on his Samsung Tab S4 review, he threatened to take away my laptop and force me to work on the Tab for a week—thankfully he didn’t make good on this particular threat.

The first review I did was on Yubico’s Yubikey NEO, which tied into our security and identity conversation at the time as more companies started looking at adding multi-factor authentication. Google would even go on to announce their own branded key, the Titan Security Key, at Cloud NEXT.

The other review I wrote covered my newly purchased iPhone and Apple Watch. Wasn’t about to say no to an opportunity to play with my new tech toys (especially since I was new to the Apple Watch) for work!

Onward to 2019

I feel like I’ve got off to a good start at BrianMadden.com and hope you’re enjoying my articles, too. I look forward to what 2019 brings and hope you’ll stick around for our continued coverage of EUC and opinions.

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