Jamf Protect aims to help partners provide Jamf macOS users with a more complete Apple device management system.

Todd R. Weiss

November 15, 2019

6 Min Read
Security additions

JAMF NATION USER CONFERENCE – With its release this week of Jamf Protect, Apple device management software vendor Jamf has now added deeper and complementary security tools and features needed by many enterprise users. And that, says company CEO Dean Hager, now means that Jamf software will be able to further help partners build out and grow their Apple device management service businesses.


Jamf’s Dean Hager

“When we become a larger part of the overall Apple in the enterprise solution it makes it easier for the channel to put together a whole solution for their customers,” Hager told Channel Futures at the company’s annual Jamf JNUC user conference in Minneapolis.

In the past, Jamf has offered its Jamf Now and Jamf Pro applications to help manage large numbers of Apple from a single console, then the company added Jamf Connect in 2018 to help enterprises provide secure access for employees to the programs and resources they need to do their work.

With Jamf Protect, the company is adding the enhanced security capabilities many companies need to make their Apple macOS device deployments more useful and widely available to workers, said Hager.

“For instance, with a company that is predominantly a Microsoft shop and that wants to bring in Apple devices, now a channel provider can bring in the Apple devices and Jamf Pro, Jamf Connect and Jamf Protect and can sell the whole solution,” he said. “That compares to in the past  when we covered a smaller chunk of the solution and they had to go out and pull together multiple enhanced security products that may or may not work together very well.”

For partners, the addition of Jamf Protect will make those sales easier and help them have a chance to secure a more successful sale, deployment and customer satisfaction experience, said Hager. “With Jamf Protect, we now protect the endpoint management, the ecosystem with Jamf Pro, and we automate enrollment and connect the users with Jamf Connect. Now they can tie it all together. And, of course, they will sell a higher value deal.”

Jamf customers have been seeking these kinds of security improvements, said Hager, and told the company in an informal meeting with a handful of customers at last year’s conference.

“At JNUC 2018, we decided to pull a few enterprise customers together, and we asked them ‘Why doesn’t anyone who wants a Mac inside your organization not have a Mac?'”

The surprising answer from the customers, he said, were concerns about deeper information security requirements needed by their businesses.

“We expected more concerns and conversations about applications and the lack thereof,” said Hager. “That turned out not to be the problem. Where they asked us for help was with their info security teams.”

Jamf Protect is an enterprise endpoint protection application built specifically for Mac devices and the macOS operating system that leverages native Apple security tools and on-device analysis of macOS activity to help IT pros better protect and monitor the security of their device deployments. Jamf Protect can be used to create customized telemetry that gives enterprise security teams deep visibility into their macOS device deployments, while also providing the ability to respond and block identified threats.

So far, Jamf Protect is built…

… to work only with devices running macOS, which leaves out iPhones and iPads, that run iOS. But if Jamf follows its previous pattern of rolling out applications like Jamf Connect first for Mac desktops and then following a year or so later with compatibility with iOS, then iOS users could potentially see a version of Jamf Protect for those devices at some point in the future.

Jamf Protect extends the capabilities of familiar built-in macOS security tools like XProtect and Gatekeeper for awareness and improved reporting, compliance and security posture, while also providing real-time alerts to analyze activity on devices so that security threats can be proactively blocked, isolated or remediated. Other capabilities include granular control over what data is collected and where it is sent, including directly into existing security information and event management systems, as well as application updates which ensure compatibility with new Apple macOS changes as they occur to prevent problems.

Like Jamf Connect, Jamf Protect can work with any other Apple device management application from competing vendors.

Armed with the security feedback from the customers they spoke with at the conference last year, Jamf engineers began prototyping a product to fill these needs and looked at the marketplace to see what was available, said Hager. The company discovered a startup, Digita Security, that was working on those same issues and acquired the company and its technologies in July.

“We went to them and said, ‘How would you like to launch this as Jamf Protect?'” which has led to its rebranding and release as a Jamf product, Hager said.



Insight’s Christopher Hurd

Christopher Hurd, the business development manager for technology provider and Jamf partner, Insight, told Channel Futures that Jamf’s new security product addition will help his company by adding more capabilities and options to Apple deployments for enterprise customers.

“The information security component is a critical part of every conversation when you talk about endpoint management,” said Hurd. “So now an enterprise can meet with us, talk about their requirements for Apple hardware and share with us their requirements for Apple information security, and then we can leverage our assessments, design and deployment methodologies to configure and optimize the right solutions for them.”

The new Jamf Protect macOS endpoint protection capabilities will let Jamf and Apple expand into different segments than they have previously served, which will also help channel partners grow their business services, he said.

“Jamf’s approach with how they partner with the channel to me has been a fantastic experience,” said Hurd. “I’ve got a weekly call with Jamf partner marketing. I’ve got a bi-weekly call with the Jamf channel leader for professional services about how our engineering team and theirs can better collaborate together. I’ve got weekly calls with the Jamf North American head of channel.”

All of this helps to keep the companies and their missions connected and aligned, he added.

“As a channel partner, we want to make sure that when we have a conversation with our customers that Jamf and Apple partners can articulate how Insight plus Jamf plus Apple is a ‘better together’ story,” said Hurd. “And that translates to faster time to deployment, increased customer satisfaction and deeper penetration in the channel.”

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About the Author(s)

Todd R. Weiss

Todd R. Weiss is an award-winning technology journalist who covers open source and Linux, cloud service providers, cloud computing, virtualization, containers and microservices, mobile devices, security, enterprise applications, enterprise IT, software development and QA, IoT and more. He has worked previously as a staff writer for Computerworld and eWEEK.com, covering a wide variety of IT beats. He spends his spare time working on a book about an unheralded member of the 1957 Milwaukee Braves, watching classic Humphrey Bogart movies and collecting toy taxis from around the world.

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