May 24, 2013, 9:26 AM — So you wanna be a "Bring Your Own Device" groupie and use your personal iPhone for work. Get ready to be handed a blacklist of apps courtesy of your stodgy IT department. Better not fire them up when you're on the job.
To be fair, only a handful of IT departments serve up a blacklist that rains on the BYOD parade, according to Fiberlink MaaS360, which surveyed its customers to come up with the most popular blacklisted iPhone apps. Less than 10% of MaaS360's customers have an apps blacklist for iOS. On average, a company that creates a blacklist targets only five apps.
But blacklists are becoming more common, says Christopher Clark, president at Fiberlink, "as apps continue to spawn everywhere for everyone in a bring-your-own era." Education, healthcare, finance, government and retail are blacklisting hotspots.
That's not to say blacklisted apps can't be on your BYOD iPhone, rather you might not be able to use those apps in certain places and situations.
"When it comes to personal devices where companies have a BYOD policy, the key is to avoid overly restricting the employees' personal devices," Clark says. "It is all about scenario based policies and management, which I find employees accept 99% of the time. Everyone knows what needs to be suspended or disallowed in operating rooms, class rooms, intellectual property meetings and so forth. It's all about context, and I find most employees cooperate."
Companies mainly blacklist apps that expose cracks for corporate data leakage, open the doors to malware, or have the potential to make workers unproductive. Apps that have large data consumption thresholds and strangle bandwidth also might land on a blacklist. Lastly, apps that can jailbreak a device are blacklisting targets.
Here are 10 popular iPhone apps that you'll often find on a blacklist:
Tom Kaneshige covers Apple, BYOD and Consumerization of IT for CIO.com. Follow Tom on Twitter @kaneshige. Follow everything from CIO.com on Twitter @CIOonline, Facebook, Google + and LinkedIn. Email Tom at email@example.com
Read more about byod in CIO's BYOD Drilldown.