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Mobile Device Refresh Enhances Productivity for Employees On-the-Go

VA employees rely heavily on their mobile devices to perform a variety of work functions. This is why VA’s Office of Information and Technology (OIT) is investing in hardware, software, and security upgrades to continue to equip stakeholders across the department to perform their roles serving Veterans.

The effort includes migrating 40,000 users from the end-of-life Good application to BlackBerry Work and working with the Office of Information Security on security policy updates in preparation for the next iOS release for Apple iPhones. OIT’s Information Technology Operations and Services Solutions Delivery (SD) Mobile and Endpoint Engineering team is managing the effort, working closely with the Telecommunications Business Office (TBO), who upgrade users to newer devices.

All these moves, undertaken as part of OIT’s continued modernization efforts, allow VA to take important steps toward implementation of the native email client on iOS devices and secure certificate-based authentication (CBA) to access VA resources. OIT is also working with the VA cloud team to move these services to the VA Enterprise Cloud environment. The ability to authenticate using CBA means employees will no longer have to rely solely on laptop or desktop computers to access the VA network. These changes also improve overall security and provide additional reporting capabilities. Moving the services to the cloud increases flexibility to expand the environment quickly and is cost-effective since cloud charges are based on actual (not anticipated) usage.

Describing this initiative, SD IT Specialist Chad Oglesbee said, “Authenticating via CBA will improve access and security for all mobile device users. It brings VA resources to employees’ fingertips while on the go without compromising the security of the device or the security of the VA network. Whether that’s a home-based provider accessing patient records while in the patient’s home or an executive checking reports while waiting at the airport.

Content last updated or reviewed on January 2, 2019