The changing face of mobile security
As I observed in one of my previous blogs: by storing and accessing more and more potentially sensitive data, security is becoming as essential on handheld devices as it is on any desktop or notebook computer. Mobile operators and device vendors need to recognise the potential value that can be achieved by integrating security features such as Lock and Wipe into their product offerings for customers. Bundling mobile security apps along with other managed services will not only provide incremental revenue but will also help them with better customer satisfaction and churn. Some operators are already doing so and yesterday, Verizon Wireless launched Verizon Mobile Security, an application that helps customers secure and protect Android smartphones against digital and physical threats. This particular app for Android assists users to remotely locate, alarm, lock and wipe data from a misplaced or stolen device. The app is powered by security vendors: Asurion and McAfee. However, operators and security providers, while marketing and creating awareness about mobile security issues and threats amongst users, will need to consider their pricing strategies sensibly. They could provide both free and premium subscription based models, upselling the free mobile security model currently offered to existing customers wherever possible. Verizon’s pricing models include: Verizon Mobile Security Basic which is free with any Verizon data plan, Verizon Mobile Security Premium priced at $1.99 per month and at $1 per month for existing Total Equipment Coverage subscribers. Juniper Research’s latest study on mobile security suggests that operators and security vendors need to anticipate changes within the mobile security market and work towards efficiently integrating security with devices connected to the mobile networks for their share of the billion dollar opportunity, as identified in our report here.