Life on the corporate network is a calm and collected experience for the "bolted in" workstation. That bolted in workstation never leaves the corporate network, and is always protected by the multiplicity of devices and technologies that we use to make sure that the corpnet is secure.
But life is different for the laptop computer. Sure, that corporate issued laptop might be connected to the corpnet and enjoy the Life of Ryan when protected by the full faith and credit of corporate IT, but once that laptop leaves the confirms of your well managed corpnet, that poor thing is on it's on. That Bedouin laptop will need to fend for itself and try to protect itself from all the bad things out there on other networks.
But how can you help your road warriors win the battles encountered out there on all the unmanaged networks in the world? You need to teach your users how to configure their computers and work with their computers so that they can go it alone and come back to your corpnet uncompromised.
Can it be done? I think so. One good way to get started on this mission is to check out Tony Bradley's article on the Microsoft.com Web site. The article is titled Going It Alone: How Mobile PCs Protect Themselves Outside of the Network and you can find it at:
Let me know what you think of this article by posting a response on this blog.
Thomas W Shinder, M.D.
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MVP - Microsoft Firewalls (ISA)