Pulse Secure isn’t like any MDM solution out there simply because it isn’t one, but what Pulse Secure does do is enhance security and offer users more efficient environment by acting as a gateway between your end-users and your corporate data center. All Pulse Secure features can be turned on at the client’s convenience, and create virtually no digital overhang or the need for administrators to learn a new skill set.
“We like to describe our solution as next generation secure access,” said Pulse Secure Senior Director of Product and Solutions, Dan Dearing. “A lot of customers don’t use the full set of MDM capabilities so it’s really about simplicity. They want to cover the bases for security and compliance and they want an easy way to extend their existing secure environment to a mobile device.
“We [Pulse Secure] were very focused on solving a particular mobile problem and that was how to connect BYOD users back to the data center, but also how to connect them to the cloud and allow them to use any application that the enterprise thought that worker needed for their job. Traditionally that was really something that would only be provided to a user if they were using a corporate device, like a BlackBerry.”
So what exactly is Pulse Secure and what makes it beneficial to enterprises of any size?
“The best way to think about this is, if you look at our typical customer. Typically they’ll fall into two buckets; one bucket would be the large enterprise or medium sized enterprises that have connected in an MDM/EMM solution like AirWatch or Mobile Iron. In those environments we would serve as the mobile gateway for that enterprise and lieu of having two separate ways for a laptop to access the data center and mobile devices to access the data center. Today, if you look at someone like AirWatch and Mobile Iron, they’ve got two major components to their solution; they’ve got a policy platform which is what the enterprise uses to create security policies on a mobile device, then they typically have a mobile gateway that that device can connect back to the data center with. That mobile gateway is primarily used to make sure that; one, the over the air connection is secure, and two, that the device itself is healthy and compliant. If a user tried to jailbreak a device, when you think about compliance, that mobile gateway would actually prevent that jailbroken device from connecting to the data center.
“In those kinds of environments, what we do is basically we look at how to more efficiently connect those devices to the data center, and rather than having two access points, what we do is provide a single access point for laptops and mobile devices including smartphones and tablets to make it more efficient and to eliminate any gaps that may occur from a compliance standpoint, when you have two access points instead of one.
“The second bucket, smaller enterprises, are actually looking for easy ways to implement MDM without having to buy an MDM solution, so in those cases we can actually serve as an MDM platform, sort of like turning on MDM as a feature through our VPN. So for a lot of smaller enterprises, that’s an easy way for us to enable mobility in the workplace without having to go through teaching the admins another skill set or adding a new platform with digital overhead into their environment.
“The MDM provider would be the policy server, so the enterprise would use that to secure the device. What Pulse Secure would serve as is the mobile gateway where that device would use us as a way to access the data center, and we would check with the policy server to determine if the device is compliant with the security standards of the policy server has established.”
Pulse Secure is partnered with AirWatch and Mobile Iron, but is compatible with any MDM provider with the help of an API.
Pulse Secure was spun out of Juniper Systems where they focused on providing secure VPN technology along with network access control for the enterprise. For years Pulse Secure as Juniper was a leader in that space and has over 20,000 customers using that platform to secure over 2 million end-points. Most of those end-points are primarily used to connect laptops back to the data center. Pulse Secure understood that customers wanted to be able to simply connect a variety of devices that a worker might use to do their job, back to the data center in a secure way and a way that was also easily managed and monitored for things like compliance and making sure the worker could abide by the security standards that were in place.
Learn more about Pulse Secure and how they can enhance your Enterprise Mobile Strategy