I've certainly experienced the feeling of losing both my smartphone, which happens to be an iPhone 4 and my iPad 2. In both cases, I simply mislaid them, but the panic, anxiety, confusion, agitation and fear I felt when I had lost my treasured 'mini-me's' (even for a brief moment) are emotions I never again want to experience. Maybe you've also felt the same way? Hopefully you, like me, found your devices.

So why do we feel so terrible when we get the slightest incline that our mobile devices may be gone forever? It's because our phones aren't just phones any more, well not if you've got a smartphone (and chances are you have one), they're our own personal storage rooms and we simply have trouble living without the little blighters. We no longer keep important information in box files or on little pieces of yellow paper. No, instead we manically input all our details on our mobile devices. We store our contacts, our bank details, our passwords, important emails, client information and so many other things that I could dedicate a whole day describing.

So the emotions that we experience when losing our mobile device are expected since we store all this valuable information on them. What if our device isn't lost but its stolen and whoever wants to can access the information stored on it. Huge disaster!

But we may not only lose or have our device stolen. For example, your kids might be playing around with your mobile device and accidentally delete some important data. The process of trying to retrieve that data is a long, tiring and boring, not to mention you may never be able to retrieve it. And because prevention is the best cure, 2X MDM can help you enforce strong mobile passwords on your devices in order to secure your data and privacy.

Enforcing Strong Mobile Password Policies for Android

When it comes to enforcing strong mobile passwords 2X MDM is very flexible. You can configure a password policy for one device, you can configure a policy for a group of Android devices, and you can even configure a policy for a group containing mixed Android and iOS Devices.

How to Enforce a Mobile Device Password Policy for a Single Android Device:

  1.  Log into your 2X MDM Account using your identification credentials.
  2. Click on the “Devices” node, click on the device that you want to configure the password policy for, and then select the “Policy” Tab.
  3. If you are not setting the password option from the Global or Group settings but you want a single device to have a different password policy than the one used for others, then you have to tick the Override Global/Group policy. After that while you are still in the “Policy” tab scroll down to “Password Settings” and click on the “Password Policy” to select what kind  of password you want to apply:
    • No password policy: You do not want to have a security password on your mobile device.
    • Password required: You need to have some kind of password on your device. A pattern to unlock your phone, a PIN or password is acceptable.
    • At least a numeric password required: Your Password -at the minimum- should contain numbers, you can use either a pin or a password, and you can only use numbers if you want.
    • At least an alphabetic password required: You can only use a password and it has to contain letters. You can also use a word or a phrase if you want
    • An alphanumeric password required: You must set a password and it has to have both letters and numbers in it to be acceptable.

  4. Once you have decided on the policy that you want to set, press “Save” and your policy will be applied to your device.

How to Enforce a Strong Mobile Passwords Policy for a Group of Smartphones

To enforce a password policy for a group of devices you first have to select the group that you want to administer the password policy to.

  1. Navigate to the “Group Policies” node and select your group. After you select the group you will see that you now have 3 separate tabs for policies, one called “Android Policy”, one called “iOS policy” and one called "Windows Policy". This is done so you can administer groups of mixed devices. In this example we have 3 Android devices and one iOS device.
  2. Click on the Android Policy tab. Note: If you are setting the policy for a group of devices to be different than the default policy other groups follow (the Global Policy), then make sure you tick the “Override Global policy” check box in your Android/iOS Policy options. You can set each group of devices to have different password policies if you wish. Scroll down the list to your “Password Settings” and select your “Password Policy” (you have the same options as the single device example above for Android devices):
    • No password policy: You do not want to have a security password on your mobile device.
    • Password required: You need to have some kind of password on your device. It be a pattern to unlock your phone, a PIN or a password.
    • At least a numeric password required: Your password - at the minimum -should have numbers, you can use either a pin or a password, and you can only use numbers.
    • At least an alphabetic password required: You can only use a password and it has to contain letters in it. You can also use a word or a phrase if you want.
    • An alphanumeric password required: You must set a password and it has to have both letters and numbers in it to be acceptable.

  3. Select the password policy that suits you and then click “Save” to apply it. You will then receive a confirmation message and your password policy will be applied to your mobile devices..
  4. The iOS policy options for passwords is different than the Android one. After you click on the “iOS Policy” tab scroll down to the “Password Settings”:
  5. You will then see (as per the example above) that you have a multitude of options for iOS devices which we will explain here:
    • Require password on device: makes it obligatory to set a password on your device
    • Allow simple value: Permit the use of repeating, ascending and descending character sequences as passwords
    • Require alphanumeric value: Require passwords to contain at least one letter. Minimum characters allowed are 2 which means for example if we take the minimum character allowance your password could be “a9”
    • Minimum number of password characters allowed: This sets the minimum number of password characters that you can have. You can leave it at the default value or you can set it from 1-16.
    • Minimum number of complex characters: this is the minimum number of complex characters in your password: Complex numbers are those designated as non-alphanumeric such as @, &, ^, %, $, #, and others. The number of these characters that should be contained in your password ranges from zero to four.
    • Maximum password age: how many days need to pass before the password needs to change
    • Maximum allowed lock time: how many minutes should pass before the device locks, ranges from 1-10 depending on the device.
    • Password History: the number of unique passwords required before reusing them.
    • Grace period for device lock: amount of time the device can be locked without asking for a password to unlock. Ranges from 1 minute to 4 hours.
    • Maximum number of incorrect password entries: how many times you can enter the wrong password before the iOS device attempts to wipe itself.

  6. After you set your password policies (if you have iOS and Android devices mixed in the device group) remember to press “Save” in each Policy tab.
  7. That’s it, you have now configured your strong password group policy for Android and iOS devices, congratulations.

Setting Global Policies.

Note: If you want all your devices in all your groups to use the same password policy settings then:

  1. Click on “System” node and then click on “Global Settings” you will notice that you have a “Global Android Client
    Policy” part and a “Global iOS Client Policy” part.

  2. Click to expand your options and you will see the “Password Settings” part in both policies. If you wish all your devices in all groups to use the same password policy you can set it from here (in the “Password Settings” part) for Android and iOS devices respectively. This policy applies to all the devices except for the cases which you override it with a group policy or you configure a device differently than others. This is why in those cases you have to tick the “Override Global Policy” check box for group policies and the “Override Global/Group” policy for a single Device.

You now have strong mobile passwords for your devices with the 2X MDM, in order to keep your data and information safe and sound.



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