“Make information access as simple as a phone call”—the slogan used by Citrix a few years ago is as relevant today as it was then. Maybe even more so. The switch to more mobile workplaces has seen the majority of businesses beef up their IT security, but the number of steps an employee has to go through before they can access their apps and files is often more than they would like. Citrix solutions, however, deliver the right balance of user experience, choice and security.
Andreas van Wingerden, Senior Manager Sales Engineering, has been at Citrix for over seventeen years. “When the first smartphone came onto the market, the first challenge facing businesses was how to handle e-mails. From one day to the next, people were able to read their e-mails whether they were in the office or not. While, on the one hand, this improved productivity, on the other it presented a lot of risks as it was no longer clear from which device or location an employee was trying to access data. At this time, company strategy tended to be to prevent this from happening as they couldn’t protect the device. This was, of course, not a practical solution as working styles had fundamentally changed and corporate intellectual property needed to be protected in another way.”
These days, it’s a 50/50 split between employees with have a fixed workplace and those without.
Add to that the fact that employees work from an average of four different locations during the working day and you can quickly get into a pickle. Andreas van Wingerden: “This is why we need to take another look at the security of applications and data. We need to analyse users and adjust to them so that they have a better experience—more simple, secure access and a more uniform working experience regardless of the endpoint used, because at the end of the day, there’s a huge difference between something working and something being practical.”
“The Citrix Workspace App is one example. It completely adapts to the individual users’ situations: where they are located, with which device they are working, the IP address, the time—everything is taken into account. In turn, the app only makes available what makes sense from a functional point of view and for security reasons.”
A growing number of applications need to be switched from being in-house services to web-based Software as a Service (SaaS). The Citrix Workspace App therefore lends itself to both traditional ways of working—access to Windows and Linus apps—as well as for web and SaaS services.
“Users, applications, content and devices are continuously monitored via the underlying analyses layer: What happened in the network and what happened on-site? Above this is the Secure Digital Parameter, a virtual security layer that constantly adapts to what the user does, what happens to the data and what happens on the “big, bad internet”. This enables, for example, quick intervention in the case of zero day attacks. We aren’t only looking at what the user does, but also at the infrastructure. Which part of the data centre has the most going on? Which cloud has the most to do? We look at all of that. And that’s unique.”
“In the past, we created a new access for each individual scenario. Now we are trying to consolidate them all. We are building our services so that they are accessible though one single access. Employees have one identity to log in with making it much easier to persuade them to keep it secure. In this way, we reduce the number of attack points.”
“We predict that in the decades, we’ll still be working with hybrid scenarios—and that’s purely based on past experience. We know that applications won’t be shifted from one day to the next from the in-house data centre to the cloud. That’s why we offer a hybrid service with which we can deliver a number of core elements from the cloud. As the customer, you then decide where you want to run them. Interested in the public cloud? No problem. Or maybe you think your own data centre is the better choice? Also no problem. It’s your choice.”
One of the most eye-catching customers is the Red Bull Racing Team who are able to collaborate with the help of Citrix virtualisation and network technologies. Andreas van Wingerden: “The race track data centre and workstations of a Formula 1 team are mobile working in its truest sense with everything having to moved 40 times a year. What most people don’t know is that the data centra at the track is linked with Citrix technology directly to the Red Bull Team in Milton Keynes (UK) where a group of analysists are on hand to analyse any damage. So if Max Verstappen is involved in a minor shunt, the team in Milton Keynes are immediately aware and even before the next turn, Max will know if his car is damaged and how he should handle it.”
Want to know more about Citrix solutions? Our Business Solutions Team is happy to help.
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