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One of the most growing concerns for any organization in the security sector is Identity and Access Management. According to CEO & Chairman Nelson Cicchitto of Avatier Corp., IAM is one of the biggest challenges, he says “A 2015 industry survey summarizes that 45% of security professionals see controlling user access to systems, meeting compliance requirements, and preventing employee data theft as their biggest challenges. 2016 will prove disastrous for organizations lacking sufficient identity and access management security controls”. This begs the questions as to what precautionary measures are the enterprises taking in order to safeguard their company and its data from the new age cyber criminals. But before we delve in to it, let us first understand what is Identity and Access Management, also referred to as simply
This begs the questions as to what precautionary measures are the enterprises taking in order to safeguard their company and its data from the new age cyber criminals. But before we delve in to it, let us first understand what is Identity and Access Management, also referred to as simply IAM.
What is Identity and Access Management?
Self-explanatory as the term Identity is, it is nothing but registration of a new employee and creation of a unique digital identity in order to work with them. All the responsibilities carried out by the employee are associated with this ID. Having an Access, however, is completely different matter than having an ID.
For instance, a new junior executive would receive a new ID, but very limited and restricted access (to certain systems or services) depending on his/her role. On the other hand, an employee at a high executive level is given access (besides the ID of course) for several reasons such as access to certain meeting rooms, systems, applications, etc.
The Identity and Access creation and management is usually managed by the HR, Admin or IT department. So how does this affect the company?
How does Identity and Access Management Solutions help a business?
Over the years, with the tremendous growth of data and information and the advancements of cloud technology, mobile computing (and also an addition of a new employee every now and then), it typically gets harder and harder for a company to keep control and safeguard all its data. A data breach could affect an employee’s reputation, misuse of their personal information, and the loss of company data and so on.
Imagine if the cyber criminals somehow get ahold of some employee credentials and the employee happens to be one of the managers with a lot of unrestricted access across the company on various levels. This attack would be nothing less than striking gold for the attacker.
Now they would have access not just of this employee but probably those other employees this person controls, as well as certain systems and application where a simple value change from “true” to “false” or vice-versa can cause so much destruction for company in so many ways, probably starting with their finance and reputation. Please bear in mind that this destruction is inexplicable when the company’s clients and their (clients) data come into the picture.
Some of the related security breaches include:
- Target payment card data breach
- $1bn cyber bank heist thwarted by spelling error
- The Ashley Madison hack
In a very sad though true misconception, quite a lot of companies believe they are safe as long as they have a frequently updating operating system and an Anti-Virus installed on each system.
They fail to understand that every new device brought within the company by anyone, without being registered and monitored adds a new risk. They fail to understand that every new employee they hire needs not just Identity and Access but the education to safeguard it.
They fail to understand the gravity of the issue. They fail to understand the seriousness of have a proper control and alertness towards Identity and access management solutions.