With BYOD lagging in adoption (vendors will argue that it's not – but it is) due to security and legal issues, among many other things (see our BYOD coverage for more), a company called Condition Zebra has stepped up to provide a certification path for the industry buzz term. Obviously the move is to help bring a little notoriety to the company, but this might possibly be one of the better solutions to aid in making BYOD an actual solution for companies. Condition Zebra is a risk management company and the certification they are presenting takes one of the major drawbacks of BYOD into account: Security. The more security knowledge organizations can readily obtain will ensure that BYOD has a life longer than just a marketing blurb.

If you've been following the BYOD coverage here on Windows IT Pro, you know that even solutions providers are completely confused about how to handle the BYOD phenomena, attempting to rename the movement every week or so. And, if the vendors are confused, imagine how confused organizations are once they implement BYOD and figure out it wasn't the cost-saving cure-all they were promised by in-flight magazines.

But, as with anything technology related, education is the key. Too many times in the modern technology world, initial ideas are thrown directly at the public as if they were polished and complete only to hear that the public was used as monkey astronauts on a first-ever mission to Mars. So, a little late, but the attempt to bring a certification path to BYOD is a welcome and valuable prospect. I doubt Condition Zebra's proposal will be the only offering for very long, but it has to start somewhere.

 

 

Condition Zebra's full press release:

 

OREM, Utah, July 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- In response to the growing concerns relating to BYOD and mobile computing, Condition Zebra ("CONZebra"), a global IT Risk management solutions provider announced today that it is launching a suite of risk management professional services credentials and certifications as part of its "Information Risk Management 360" suite of consulting and educational services, including the market's first certification that focuses on BYOD.

 

"We are the first to bring a credential to the market that focuses specifically on BYOD and mobile computing implementation," said Condition Zebra General Manager and Executive Vice President Rick Homer. "For many years the CONZebra team has focused its efforts on professional services, but our clients are asking us for more," said Homer, from the company's U.S. headquarters in Utah.

 

"The entire line of 'InfoRisk360' Risk Management Services are designed to target specific market needs, with a keen focus on three elements of 'Risk,'" said Condition Zebra CEO Drew Williams, who is in Asia preparing for the company's ZebraCon International Risk Management Conference. "Those three key elements include the policy, the controls and the degree of external exposure of an organization, and I think our services and corresponding certifications will go a long way to help our clients reduce risk in their computing environments."

 

With the growing number of reported attacks on IT infrastructures around the world, said Williams, "The focus on fundamental risk management around mobile computing and BYOD is emerging as the next trend in developing a comprehensive strategy that addresses information security."

 

"The rapid expansion of BYOD poses new and evolving risks to increasingly global enterprises and organizations. In this highly dynamic environment employee owned assets present unprecedented challenges in the areas of visibility, control, privacy and vulnerability," said Dr. Dennis Moreau a Chief Technology Officer at RSA Security in California. Moreau added that understanding (and subsequently, by certifying on comprehension) of BYOD principles "is rapidly becoming as important to cultivate as it is to demonstrate compliance at any one particular point in time."

 

"BYOD is no longer a fantasy discussion on how to deal with end user computing, but the present evolution of how IT will provision and manage client services across numerous employee and partner supplied platforms including mobile devices and laptops," said SANS Master Instructor Chris Farrow, Risk Management Manager for Compassion International.

 

The "InfoRisk 360 Secure BYOD Certification" credential is being co-developed with workforce teams associated with the U.S. Department of Labor, and is designed in modules, so participants may advance through the certification process on a self-paced basis. "This way," said Homer, "Students can ensure they fully comprehend each phase before moving forward, and employers will be confident that these certified professionals fully understand the urgency and efficiencies needed to effectively address BYOD in any work environment."

 

Condition Zebra is working on initiatives with several American universities on further development of professional-level risk management and cyber security credentials, including a USD 3 million work re-training and post-graduate initiative with Utah Valley University, among other graduate schools, as part of establishing a National Security Agency Center for Excellence in Education. "While BYOD is a growing interest and concern throughout the IT Risk Management space, we see it and mobile computing as being part of a comprehensive shift away from anti-hacking measures, and back to good risk management contingency planning," said Williams.

 

About Condition Zebra (CONZebra)

Headquartered in the United States, Condition Zebra provides risk management and critical infrastructure security solutions that are designed to reduce risk to manageable and resolvable levels, and focus on international and industry-specific compliance standards and frameworks, throughout the States and APAC region.