Block app download on devices

One of the major requirement of organizations that provide corporate mobile devices to users is to block apps from being downloaded. Apps can be blacklisted or blocked on devices for various reasons. Some of the common reasons to block apps are to prevent the installation of malicious apps for data security, limit access to apps that hamper productivity and to avoid accessing inappropriate content on corporate devices.

In such cases, a mobile device management (MDM) solution, like Mobile Device Manager Plus can help organizations to block apps on devices. Mobile Device Manager Plus allows organizations to blacklist apps and futher disable installation of the app on iOS, Android and Windows devices.

In case of a BYOD environment where employee-owned devices access corporate data, containerization of corporate apps is recommended to ensure secure access to corporate data and to prevent data loss.

Here's what this document covers


Pre-requisites to block apps on devices

Mobile Device Manager Plus allows organizations to block apps only on devices that meet the following requirements

Android devices

iOS devices

  • Devices must be Supervised and running iOS 9.3 or later versions. 

Windows devices

  • Devices must be running Windows 10 or later versions

Apps that can be blacklisted

Mobile Device Manager Plus allows admins to block the following apps on the devices

  • User-installed apps: User installed apps can be blacklisted to ensure users cannot install malicious apps on the devices.
  • Pre-installed apps: Pre-installed apps are the apps that are available on devices by default and aren't installed by the users. They are also known as default apps or factory apps. Some apps like Youtube that is pre-installed on devices can hamper employee productivity and hence may be blocked in organizations.
  • Managed apps: Managed apps are the apps that have been distributed to devices using Mobile Device Manager Plus. Organizations that prefer testing their apps before installation can block app installation on devices that are not a part of their test groups.

How to block an app from being downloaded?

Admins can block app download on devices using the Mobile Device Manager Plus console. Once a device is enrolled, the device is scanned and all the available apps are available in the Inventory page. Admins can select the apps to be blocked on the devices and click on Blacklist apps. They can then choose whether to block apps on all devices or only specific devices. For step by step instructions to block apps on Android, iOS and Windows 10 devices, refer this document

What happens on blacklisting apps?

Admins can choose the action that should be performed when a blacklisted app is discovered on the device

  • Uninstall Immediately: On selecting this option, Mobile Device Manager Plus will remove the blocked app from the devices immediately upon detecting it and prevent users from downloading the blocked app on the device.
  • Notify users and install immediately: An email is sent to the users that a blocked app is detected on the device and the app is removed from the device. It further blocks the app download on the device
  • Notify users: This option notifies the user via email about the presence of the app on the device and doesn't remove the app from the devices. The number of email reminders to be sent to the users can also be configured

block app installation with Blacklist Apps

Completely blocking app downloads and running only required apps

With Mobile Device Manager Plus, organizations can also choose completely block app installation and run only the corporate apps on the device. To block app installations on Android devices, admin can navigate to Android Profile -> Restrictions -> Applications -> Users can install unapproved apps

To run only selected apps on Android, iOS or Windows 10 devices, you can lock down the devices into Kiosk Mode and block apps while also restricting other device functionalities.

Refer this document for a list of other app related security policies.