Do you really know how much of your network bandwidth is being used for business?
By Malcolm Orekoya, Senior Technical Consultant, Netutils
This post contains original thoughts posted by Malcolm Orekoya, Senior Technical Consultant, Network (Utilities) Systems Ltd. These views are his own.
We’re all too familiar with the world of applications, which are now available to users on a variety of devices, such as smart phones, tablets and laptops. As time has passed, network and security personnel are not only concerned with “bring your own device” (BYOD) and the issues that come with this, but now that there are over 500,000 apps available just for iPhone users and at least 320,000 apps available in the Android market IT Managers increasingly have to pay more attention to “bring your own application” (BYOA) issues in the workplace.
Users can walk onto your corporate network with their personal devices, which have their personal applications installed and utilise your network bandwidth/resources as they see fit, even if your policy only allows for internet access. This might not be a major problem for most applications that don’t access the internet or even for those that use very minimal amounts of bandwidth, but with certain applications such as the new BBC iPlayer “app”, which allows users to download BBC TV programmes through an internet connection and store it on their devices, your corporate bandwidth utilisation is likely to increase dramatically due to the size of these TV programmes and the number of users downloading programmes on your wireless network rather than at home in an effort to avoid any personal data allowance limits.
As more applications like these become more readily available across multiple devices and operating systems, network administrators need to be able to monitor their bandwidth usage and have clear visibility of who is using their network, what applications are being used and how these are affecting business critical applications. Once there is that visibility, user access to non-business critical applications can then be controlled in order to make sure the network is not adversely affected.
Suggested Further Reading: Exinda ‘5 Best Practices to Assure Your Network For the Next Big Social Event