BlackBerry is billing its new VPN Authentication service as “an entirely new way to connect employees to corporate data.” On the surface, it’s pretty much just two-factor authentication. In the demonstration I saw, an employee who attempts to login to their VPN network is prompted to confirm their identity on their phone — a quick tap and they’re in.
The service will work on iOS, Android and BlackBerry 10 smartphones, provided the devices are already managed by a company’s IT department with BES 12. BlackBerry says that this solution is largely aimed at eliminating the need to tote around key fobs that generate random numerical codes.
It all seems very straightforward, which is largely the point. We see a simple tap, but the folks responsible for managing that corporate network get responsive, immediate control over who has VPN access, circumventing the occasional lost key fob and the headaches that will cause. It’ll also allow them to quickly grant or revoke access, which could prove handy if a smartphone is lost or otherwise compromised. More