“Apple’s latest gadget, the iPhone, combines three devices into one: an iPod, cellphone and Internet communication device. But while it is a cool device, the iPhone can be a major security risk to corporations who may want to use it as a business tool, according to Ari Tamman [sic: correct name is Tammam], vice-president of channels with Promisec, an internal network security provider. ‘There are quite a number of ways that the iPhone could provide security problems to an organization,’ said Tamman,” Vanessa Ho writes for ConnectIT.

Ho writes, “One such security risk, Tamman pointed out, is the fact that iPhone can act as a mass storage device that can be attached to a computer where an unscrupulous employee could take classified information that is not allowed outside of an organization. ‘That is a huge concern most people are thinking of and [the iPhone] doesn’t offer the piece of mind for security conscious businessmen,’ he added.”

“In addition to data leakage, another security risk to corporations and its assets is that the iPhone can connect to the Internet, either via a USB cable or wirelessly, that can gain access to a corporate network to not only steal information but introduce malicious code or threats,” Ho writes.

Ho writes, “If companies are going to allow their employees to use the iPhone as a business tool, Tamman said that they are going to have to look at what are the avenues into the corporate network the iPhone can use and how it can be secured. The problem here is that since the device is so new there is not yet enough information on its specifications for companies to make clear-cut decisions on how to best secure networks from the device… Aside from the security risks, Tamman added that the iPhone really isn’t very practical for the corporate environment and does not advise corporations to allow it for business use.”

MacDailyNews Take: If there is not yet enough information on its specifications for companies to make clear-cut decisions, then how can Tammam say that iPhone “isn’t very practical for the corporate environment” and advise against iPhone use in business settings?

Ho continues, “One of the problems with the iPhone for corporate use said Tamman is the device doesn’t allow third applications to run on it and that the device has its own Web-based email system that doesn’t support Microsoft Exchange or IBM Lotus Notes, which is what most companies are using today.”

MacDailyNews Take: Apple’s iPhone supports MS Exchange via IMAP. There is still the question of whether iPhone will support Exchange Direct Push (Engadget has more on that issue here).

Ho continues, “He added that the iPhone is competing with existing PDAs out there like BlackBerry’s or Palm Trios [sic] that provide users with full office functionality such as supporting Exchange and Lotus Notes. ‘There is no real business benefit that is not provided by existing PDA vendors. If I can’t manage my corporate life or business life, [then the iPhone] is really just another gadget, like the iPod music player, but doesn’t give me any enterprise functionality,’ he added.”

MacDailyNews Take: Again, Apple’s iPhone supports MS Exchange via IMAP. The ability to make phone calls, use visual voicemail, text via SMS, manage massive contact lists, display photos, audio, and videos, browse the web with a full-featured browser, send and receive rich html POP3 or IMAP email, utilize integrated Google Maps, view real-time stock and weather reports, with built-in 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.0 doesn’t give users any enterprise functionality or allow them to manage their corporate life or business life?

Ho continues, “For now, the device is aimed more at the consumer market and Tamman sees the iPhone being positioned as replacing someone’s iPod or regular cellphone — not one’s BlackBerry.”

Full article here.
The sole purpose of this article as we see it: cast fear, uncertainty, and/or doubt (FUD) upon Apple iPhone use by business people via incorrect statements and/or unfounded speculation while suggesting that corporations stick with BlackBerry or Palm devices instead. The combined public relations departments of all the companies that are threatened by Apple’s iPhone would be hard pressed to produce a more FUD-ridden piece.

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