Access certification is a process in which teams review user access to their systems and data. This ensures that it meets security, compliance, and governance standards. The certification involves regular reviews of user accounts and privileges, as well as granting or revoking access when necessary. During the review process, teams verify that users have appropriate levels of access based on their roles within the company. This ensures that they only have access to the resources they need to perform their duties. Access Certification can help a team maintain visibility into who has what level of access. This provides an added layer of security against malicious actors trying to gain control of sensitive information or assets.
Active directory is Microsoft’s identity management service that enables teams to control access to their data and IT resources. It provides a centralized platform for user authentication, authorization, policy enforcement, and reporting. Active Directory helps administrators manage user accounts, enable SSO access, and ensure secure access to resources by setting up rules and restrictions on user activities. Thus, through its multi-tier hierarchy of organizational units (OUs), groups, and users, Active Directory is a powerful tool for securing a team’s networks and data.
Access Discovery is an essential component of a secure network and IT infrastructure. The process involves assessing which user accounts have access to a team’s systems and data. It also helps in understanding when, where, and how they are accessing these resources. Discovery also includes different types of access (ex. administrative or privileged) and determining who has elevated levels of access rights. This helps teams quickly identify any potential security gaps in their systems. Thus they effectively reduce the risk of malicious actors infiltrating their networks.
Access Management (AM) is the process of controlling which identities have access to an organization’s systems and data. This includes setting up authorized users, defining roles and rights, developing policies and procedures for granting access, enforcing security measures such as authentication protocols, and curating user access. It also involves revoking access at the end of a user’s tenure or when their permissions need to be updated. Access management helps organizations ensure that only authorized users can gain access to their environment, providing an added layer of security to protect confidential information from unauthorized actors.
Advanced persistent threat (APT) is a type of cyberattack in which an attacker gains unauthorized access to a target’s computer system over an extended period, usually through multiple methods. The primary goal of the attack is to gain persistent access and evade detection while stealing confidential data or disrupting/damaging the target system. APTs employ sophisticated tactics such as privilege escalation and lateral movement to gain access to sensitive data and critical assets. They also rely on obfuscation and deception techniques to hide from traditional security solutions. To protect against advanced persistent threats, teams must adopt comprehensive security measures that include careful monitoring, incident response planning, and layered defenses that cover both endpoints and networks.
An Application Programming Interface (API) is a special type of application that allows different programs to communicate and interface with each other. APIs function as a kind of go-between that lets applications “talk” to each other, requesting, sharing, and receiving information. APIs are critical for interoperability between systems in an enterprise’s infrastructure, especially when outside applications need to be integrated into an existing system.
Attack surface refers to the total number of potential entry points that can be exploited by an attacker. It is made up of all the attack vectors and associated components (e.g., applications, services, networks) that a system has and can be quite large due to its numerous components. By knowing their attack surface, companies can develop proactive defense strategies and deploy adequate security controls to mitigate or prevent attacks from occurring. Additionally, understanding the attack surface helps teams stay ahead of current threats and adjust their security measures as needed to stay secure.
Authentication authorization ensures that only authorized users have access to protected resources. It typically involves verifying a user’s identity, while authorization is the process of granting or denying access based on predefined criteria. Teams can leverage a variety of authentication technologies such as MFA, biometrics, tokens, and certificates to verify user identity. Authorization often relies on RBAC to define the resources that each user or group can access and which actions they can take. By combining authentication with authorization, enterprises can ensure that only authenticated users are granted appropriate access rights.
The Californian Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is a 2018 California state law which requires any business collecting information on Californian customers to comply with legal protections regarding the citizens’ private data. Though the law only applies to California residents, the Act has become a template for privacy expectations across the United States. Because so many technology companies and consumers reside within California, most major tech providers have elected to implement CCPA compliance within their teams. Customers reap the benefits of these standards, including personal data and privacy management, across the world.
CI/CD, or continuous integration/continuous delivery, is an automated workflow that allows developers to build, test, and deploy software applications. In the CI/CD pipeline, developers write code in a version control system such as Git or Subversion. This code is then subjected to automated tests and builds before being pushed into production. With a CI/CD Pipeline, deployments become highly reproducible across different environments and teams can collaborate efficiently on new features without the fear of introducing unexpected errors.
Cloud computing refers to the usage of remotely linked computers working together. Applications include SaaS as well as working remotely. While it enables better collaboration and communication, it also creates a wider attack surface which can be vulnerable to hackers. Solutions like CIEM are made to counteract this.
Cloud storage is a method of storing data remotely instead of on a local drive. By connecting a computer to an online data repository like Google Drive, DropBox, or iCloud, users can access their data from the internet from any connected device. However, this decentralization makes protecting sensitive files more difficult, since the data is no longer tied to a single physical machine.
A configuration management database (CMDB) is a crucial repository of IT configuration and infrastructural data. CMDBs give administrators a focal point of verifiable truth for their IT management. Pertinent data in the CMDB includes records on hardware, software, source of truth for an organization’s IT service management (ITSM) initiatives. This includes records on how software, hardware, and personnel assets were used as well as policies surrounding them.
Customer identity and access management (CIAM) is a subset of IAM focused specifically on the profiles of customers rather than employees and partners. In addition to the standard IAM concerns such as efficiency and security, CIAM also emphasizes user experience, placing special importance on minimizing the friction experienced by customers. These systems may have different infrastructure from internal IAM due to the external nature of the users and often focus on user interface features. However, an increasing number of identity services use the same system for both B2B and B2C, designing a single system that allows for the demarcation of privileges between users. This allows for employees to enjoy the benefits of a user-focused interface.
Cloud infrastructure entitlement management (CIEM) is a unique and relatively young branch of AM centered specifically around cloud computing. CIEM deals with the challenges of the cloud’s decentralized structure and proclivity towards unchecked permissions. This loose approach to security can result in an exceptionally vulnerable attack surface and challenging remediation of breaches due to a lack of proper tracking. A digital transformation through a managed identity service is often the only way to fully institute secure CIEM.
A Chief information security officer (CISO) is a high-level employee responsible for protecting an enterprise’s critical data. CISOs are the standard point of contact with outside IAM experts during implementation and for internal employees experiencing difficulties with their security. CISOs must possess a high degree of interpersonal skills as well as deep technical knowledge, making this crucial position difficult to fill with the right person.
A configuration management database (CMDB) is a crucial repository of IT configuration and infrastructural data. CMDBs give administrators a focal point of verifiable truth for their IT management. Pertinent data in the CMDB includes records on hardware, software, source of truth for a team’s IT service management (ITSM) initiatives. This includes records on how software, hardware, and personnel assets were used as well as policies surrounding them.
Cyber-attacks often consist of a chain of events that allow malicious actors to gain access to a system or network and cause disruption. These attacks typically begin when attackers use methods such as phishing, malware, or social engineering to gain initial entry into the target environment. This is followed by a reconnaissance phase where they attempt to identify weaknesses and vulnerabilities in the compromised infrastructure. Once these are identified, they may then move laterally within the network and steal credentials and steal data. Finally, they carry out their attack which could range from ransomware deployment to data exfiltration. Cyber-attack chains can be complex and require multiple stages of defense to counter.
A form of insurance designed to protect businesses and individuals from the cost associated with cyber-attacks. It provides financial protection for teams that fall victim to malicious activities such as data breaches, phishing attacks, malicious software, or ransomware. The policy will also typically provide coverage for legal costs associated with defending a claim, restoring lost data, repairing damaged systems, and notifying affected customers. Cyber Insurance is an essential part of any team’s risk mitigation plan as it helps to minimize the potential financial impact of a cyber-attack.
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting networks, systems, and programs from digital attacks. These attacks are usually aimed at accessing, changing, or destroying sensitive information, extorting money from users, or interrupting normal business processes. Cybersecurity relies on a combination of technologies for defense, such as firewalls and antivirus software, as well as policies and procedures to protect vulnerable points of access. Training and education are also important components as all stakeholders need to be aware of potential threats and how to mitigate them. Cybersecurity is an ever-evolving field as attackers continually look for new ways to gain access and exploit weaknesses in teams’ defenses.
A data breach occurs when sensitive, confidential, or protected information is accessed and disclosed without authorization. This information can include credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, customer records, health information, and more. Data breaches typically occur when a hacker gains access to a team’s network through a security vulnerability or malicious attack. Once inside the system, the attacker can steal data or install malware that can spread throughout the team. As such, it’s important for teams to have strong cybersecurity systems in place as this will reduce their risk of becoming victims of a data breach.
Digital transformation, also known as IAM modernization, is the implementation of a sweeping overhaul and upgrade to an enterprise’s identity and access processes. This can involve migrating from legacy approaches and profiles to more modern solutions. Digital transformation also involves integrating user data with the team’s network and systems, providing a single source for access control and identity management. Additionally, it requires continuous monitoring to ensure that all components are up-to-date and secure, limiting the risk of data breaches or other malicious activities.
FIDO, or Fast ID Online, is standardized set of authentication protocols intended to shift users over to password-less verification methods such as biometrics, paired devices, and MFA. This shift is advocated for and practiced by the FIDO alliance, an open association of companies looking to accelerate the global shift away from passwords. Their guidelines form a basic rubric for the minimum amount of support needed for passwordless systems. However, the list does not require the identity tracking crucial for comprehensive Zero Trust implementation.
GDPR, or the General Data Protection Regulation, is a European regulation introduced in 2016 to give people control over the way their personal data is used and handled by teams. The regulation focuses on the protection of information which can be used to identify an individual. These include names, addresses, or date of birth. GDPR requires teams to inform people when they are collecting their data and what it will be used for. Additionally, teams must keep that data secure and only used for its intended purpose. Finally, individuals have the right to request access to their data and ask for it to be amended or deleted if necessary.
Healthcare cybersecurity involves implementing measures such as encryption, access control, user authentication and identity management, as well as ensuring that staff receives appropriate training on how to handle sensitive data securely. It also requires frequent monitoring of networks and systems to detect any potential security threats or breaches. Investing in robust healthcare cybersecurity is necessary to ensure the safety of patients’ data and provide high quality care without compromising patient confidentiality.
IAM, or identity and access management, is the combined practice of AM and IM. An IAM solution references a user’s identity to determine which resources they are authorized to use, all in a single framework. The IAM apparatus encompasses four main pillars: AM, CIAM, IGA, and PAM. Taken together, this “identity fabric” is meant to provide users with a secure and frictionless means of accessing the applications and data they are authorized to use. At the same time IAM provides extensive analytics on who is using what, when and how they accessed it, and who authorized them. This creates a cohesive program that simultaneously offers excellent security and user experiences.
IAM application onboarding is the process of setting up and managing user accounts, privileges, and access rights when a new application is introduced in an organization. This process involves understanding what users require to interact with the application, which privileges they need to be granted and how existing IAM systems will accommodate the integration. It also requires careful planning to ensure that users have appropriate access without compromising security or compliance policies. During onboarding, organizations should consider authentication protocols, user provisioning, risk management policies and authorization standards for continued access control. By establishing an efficient IAM onboarding process, organizations can streamline user management processes as well as overall efficiency of their IAM system.
IAM assessments are typically conducted by an outside audit firm to identify areas where processes can be improved, policies updated, or new technologies implemented. During an IAM Assessment, organizations should expect to have their identity management’s roles and permissions analysis, privileged user analysis, data classification analysis, and security incident response plan reviewed. By taking a comprehensive approach to IAM assessments, companies can improve the overall security posture of their organization.
IAM Maturity is a grading scale referring to the overall effectiveness of an IAM program. A mature program identifies identity fabric gaps, establishes priorities, and plans out improvements. It includes detection and remediation capabilities and a cost/benefit analysis of identity investments. Individual components of an IAM program are then given a ranking to make understanding its overall state easier.
Identity Orchestration (IO) is a type of service platform which unifies and configures various IAM controls and monitors into a single integrated system. An identity orchestrator allows the vital IAM domains of AM, IGA, CIAM, and PAM to all be controlled through a single pane of glass.
IAM roadmapping is the process of mapping out the future goals of an organization’s IAM program, assessing current processes and policies, integrating new technologies, establishing best practices, and developing a timeline for implementation. With IAM roadmapping, companies can develop long-term plans to ensure their digital identities are secure, scalable, and meet regulatory obligations. Additionally, the roadmap helps identify gaps in existing security measures as well as potential areas of improvement to ensure the IAM system remains effective over time.
Identity as a service (IDaaS) is an authentication and access management solution that helps businesses secure their networks and applications. IDaaS allows teams to quickly set up secure user accounts with the help of cloud-based services and provides one-click access to web-based applications and resources. It also helps teams manage identity information for users, including passwords, usernames, email addresses, and other credentials. By using IDaaS, businesses can ensure their network security is up to date while simplifying the overall identity management processes. Additionally, it can help increase employee productivity by streamlining the authentication process while providing a single sign-on experience across multiple application environments.
Identity lifecycle management (ILM) is a process for managing the identities of people and teams within an enterprise. It covers all aspects of the identity lifecycle, from initial registration to deletion or deactivation at the end of a user’s term. ILM helps administrators manage user access rights, keep track of who can do what with which systems, control access over time, and bolster security practices.
Identity management (IM) is the overarching database management of a user’s profile containing their unique attributes. This can be thought of like a driver’s license (documentation recording who you are) which can be referenced for verification. This is the most basic component of IAM and has existed for much longer. Even a physical filing cabinet full of identity records would technically count as identity management. In the digital age those files have become a means of enabling authorization. This allows a stable point of reference for privileges and access so long as they are kept secure.
Identity sprawl refers to an oversaturation of identities within a team or service. These identities are separate, incompatible, and often redundant accounts created by users to access online services. These accounts become increasingly scattered and sprawling, creating friction for the user as they struggle to keep track of their login information. Security risk increases across this larger attack surface, providing more potential avenues for bad actors to access a system. Teams counteract sprawl by instituting practices such as SSO.
IGA, or Identity Governance and Administration, is the active practice of provisioning, monitoring, and disabling identities. A robust IGA solution improves efficiency through automation. It enforces pre-set policies by checking privileges against the category of identity a user possesses. This also extends to automatically removing orphan accounts which are no longer in use and could present a security risk. IGA can control all these identities and entitlements from a single viewpoint. This gives administrators an easier time monitoring and controlling accounts.
An implementation partner is a company that provides expertise with integrating software or technology solutions. Partners help teams assess their needs, identify the most effective and cost-efficient solutions, and manage the implementation process. This includes ongoing training and support to stay up-to-date with latest developments in their industry.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a growing network of linked smart devices. It offers increased performance as well as greater security risks over a larger attack surface. Competent IAM procedures and managed identity services must address IoT devices and their associated cybersecurity risks. This includes making sure that authentication is secure and that access permissions are properly set.
Information technology asset management (ITAM) refers to the management and tracking of IT assets using collected data to strategize about IT assets can best be used. A robust ITAM reduces asset expenditure and maximizes their effect. It also provides a comprehensive report on upkeep cost and potential optimization methods.
Just-in-time access (JITA) is a user access control model. Under this model, users only get access to resources for the duration of their task. This grants users access to applications or other resources only on an as-needed basis. Doing so helps teams maintain greater control and security over user authorization. To implement JITA, teams can set up specific timeframes for user authentication and clearly define when a user’s access expires.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) are a quantifiable measure of how well a company is achieving its business objectives. People usually associate the phrase KPI with the results of business investments in general. However, teams frequently employ it within the identity industry as a shorthand for the success of an IAM program. Common IAM KPIs include boosted efficiency, time to implementation, and money saved. These deliverables are used as the standard measurement for whether or not a digital transformation can be considered successful.
Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) is an industry-standard protocol for managing directory information. LDAP provides a distributed, extensible platform for storing and accessing user data both on-premises and in the cloud. It enables teams to manage their users, groups, and other objects via directory services like Microsoft Active Directory or OpenLDAP. LDAP allows users to securely access applications, services, and resources without having to type in usernames/passwords at every login. Additionally, LDAP is widely used to enable SSO authentication across multiple applications and networks. By leveraging the powerful features of LDAP such as flexible search filters, secure authentication protocols, and fine-grained access control policies, teams can easily manage users’ access rights while increasing their overall security posture.
Machine learning (ML) is the automatic and iterative process of collecting and leveraging data to improve system performance. By leveraging ML technologies, teams can deploy more effective IAM processes. These are not only more secure but also more efficient. Examples of ML-based IAM solutions include biometrics/facial recognition, anomaly detection tools for suspicious activities, and predictive analytics engines. These identify potential risk factors or security issues before they occur.
Malware attacks are a hacking method wherein a malicious software is downloaded onto a system to target sensitive data, corrupt vital system files, or infiltrate malicious code. Hackers typically deliver these attacks through phishing emails or malicious websites. This makes it important to enforce strict email policies and educate users on how to spot potential malicious sites. It is also essential for teams to keep their systems up to date with the latest security patches. This prevents malware from taking advantage of known vulnerabilities. Antivirus programs can help block known threats before they can execute on a user’s device. However, smart practice and policy remains the best defense.
A Managed service provider (MSP) is a team brought on to design, implement, and remotely manage a customer’s IAM systems. The best MSPs create bespoke systems tailored to the specific needs of their client, greatly reducing the time, effort, and money required to get an IAM solution up and running. Due to the dearth of identity expertise within most enterprises, teams consider contracting an MSP to advise on, implement, and operate an IAM solution to be a smart investment. When selecting a prospective MSP, businesses should consider the provider’s experience, adaptability, talent pool, focus, and financial stability.
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is an increasingly important security measure for organizations to protect against malicious actors. MFA works by requiring users to provide two or more pieces of information to authenticate their identity, such as a combination of a password and a one-time code sent via SMS. This ensures that even if a user’s password becomes compromised, the system will still be secure as the hacker would need the second factor to gain access. In addition to being more secure, MFA can also make logging in faster and easier from any location, since users won’t need to remember complex passwords. To maximize security, organizations should make sure that their MFA configurations are optimized in accordance with industry best practices, such as avoiding weak passwords and disabling easily guessable security questions.
The NIST Cybersecurity Framework (NCF) is a set of guidelines and best practices developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to help organizations protect their data and systems from cyber threats. The NCF consists of five core functions – Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond and Recover – that cover all aspects of cybersecurity, including risk assessment, access control, incident response and more. By following the guidance in the NCF, organizations can develop resilient cybersecurity systems that are tailored to the specific needs of their environment.
NoSQL (meaning non-SQL) is an alternative to SQL that uses a single data structure as opposed to a typical relational database. The dataset can be copied and stored on multiple local or remote servers, making NoSQL a good choice for cloud databases and other data solutions geared for fast storage and retrieval.
Orphaned accounts are user profiles that no longer need access to a system yet still exist, often with full permissions. Orphaned accounts can be difficult to detect as they may not have been used in months or even years, thus organizations should take proactive steps to identify and revoke outstanding access privileges. Doing so keeps networks secure and protected from unauthorized access or data breaches. Additionally, all users should adhere to strong password policies and use MFA whenever possible to provide an additional layer of security.
Over provisioned user accounts are a security concern wherein individuals have access rights or privileges that are beyond their need or job function. This creates a larger attack surface which can be exploited by attackers. To combat this problem, organizations must properly manage user accounts and ensure that individuals only have the access privileges necessary for their role. Additionally, organizations should regularly audit accounts and regularly review user permissions to identify and remove unnecessary access rights. By reducing the scope of over provisioned user accounts, organizations can reduce their risk of falling victim to malicious activity such as data theft or unauthorized system access.
A password is a string of characters used for authenticating or accessing a system or application. Passwords are typically designed to be complex, highly secure, and nearly impossible to guess. When creating a new password, it is important to ensure that it is unique and unlike any other passwords you may have. It is also recommended to use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols for added security. Additionally, all passwords should be changed on a regular basis to protect against hackers and other malicious actors.
Password fatigue occurs when a user becomes overwhelmed by the number of credentials they must remember and lets smart security practices falter as a result. Examples include easy-to-guess passwords or reusing the same password across multiple accounts. Password managers offer a solution to this laxity, and MFA should be enabled whenever possible in order to provide an extra layer of defense. Finally, organizations need to ensure that their employees are aware of best practices around strong passwords and providing proper training if needed. By taking these steps, both individuals and organizations can reduce their risk of suffering from password fatigue and remain secure online.
Passwordless authentication is a secure authentication method that eliminates the need for users to remember complex passwords. This type of authentication focuses on utilizing methods like biometrics, OTPs (One-Time Passwords) and MFA for verifying user identity. By removing the need for passwords, teams can reduce their risk of falling victim to cyber threats. Examples include credential stuffing and phishing attacks. Passwordless authentication also enables easier access for employees and customers, making it easier to safely access corporate resources or accounts.
Phishing attacks are a common social engineering tactic used by cyber criminals to gain access to sensitive information, steal money, or install malicious software. In a typical phishing attack, the attacker disguises themselves as a trustworthy source and sends emails with malicious links/attachments. These can download malware onto the victim’s computer. It is important for teams to educate their employees on recognizing signs of phishing attempts. These include misspelled words, suspicious emails from unrecognized sources, and requests for confidential information. Additionally, teams should implement MFA for all online accounts and use strong passwords across all systems. By taking these steps, teams can minimize their risk of falling victim to a phishing attack.
The principle of least privilege (PoLP) is a maxim stating that users should only have minimum necessary access. This mindset seeks to reduce the possible attack surface of an identity fabric. It accomplishes this by curating orphaned accounts and restricting privileges with the shortest downtime possible. PoLP is increasingly seen as the cornerstone of effective Zero Trust and the practical application of its core focus.
Privileged access management (PAM) is an access system which applies the principles of role-based access control to enforce the principle of least privilege. PAM solutions provide automatic controls and safeguards to prevent accounts from becoming compromised. This is done by monitoring, detecting, and halting access to critical resources by unauthorized persons. PAM is considered to be the highest level of identity security and management with control over all subordinate domains. Thus it is one of the most vital tools for remediating breach events and fortifying an attack surface.
Privileged Account and Session Management (PASM) is a subset of PAM concerned with privileged account monitoring and management. PASM enforces PoLP by giving a PASM-enabled account powerful but temporary administrative control over the target server, with their usage carefully recorded. In essence, PASM tracks and monitors the elevated accounts that delegate privileges to other accounts. Its counterpart, PEDM, handles those elevations. By recording data on how PAM powers are used, an enterprise can ensure they are being used in such a way that satisfies compliance, security, and data integrity.
Privileged password management is the practice of protecting, controlling, and monitoring privileged access passwords for users or applications. It ensures that only authorized personnel have access to sensitive areas of a system, such as privileged accounts. Privileged Password Management includes features such as password rotation, MFA, and control over which users can reset passwords. Robust Privileged Password Management protects against unauthorized access to systems by ensuring credentials are secure and monitored in real-time. These measures ensure a secure IT environment and provide peace of mind that the team’s confidential data is safe.
Privilege Elevation & Delegation Management (PEDM) is a subset of PAM and the counterpart of PASM that handles the elevation and administration of privilege elevation for underprivileged accounts. Within a PEDM solution, PoLP is enforced by restricting access to strictly delineated privileges. However, unlike PASM, these privileges are permanent until revoked and much more granular than wide-ranging PASM powers.
Phishing attacks are a common social engineering tactic used by cyber criminals to gain access to sensitive information, steal money, or install malicious software. In a typical phishing attack, the attacker will disguise themselves as a trustworthy source and send emails with malicious links or attachments that can download malware onto the victim’s computer. It is important for organizations to educate their employees on recognizing signs of phishing attempts, such as misspelled words, suspicious emails from unrecognized sources, and requests for confidential information. Additionally, organizations should implement MFA for all online accounts and use strong passwords across all systems. By taking these steps, organizations can minimize their risk of falling victim to a phishing attack.
Privileged password management is the practice of protecting, controlling, and monitoring privileged access passwords for users or applications. It ensures that only authorized personnel have access to sensitive areas of a system, such as privileged accounts. Privileged Password Management includes features such as password rotation, MFA, and control over which users can reset passwords. By implementing robust Privileged Password Management procedures an organization can protect against unauthorized access to systems by ensuring credentials are secure and monitored in real-time. These measures help to ensure a secure IT environment and provide peace of mind that the organization’s confidential data is safe from malicious actors.
Privilege sprawl is a security threat that occurs when too many users, applications, or services have access to privileged accounts. This can lead to insecure configurations, unauthorized access to data, and malicious insiders being able to move laterally through a system. To reduce the risk of privilege sprawl, organizations must ensure that each user only has the minimum access needed and that privileged accounts are managed securely. Additionally, monitoring tools should be in place to detect inappropriate use of privileged accounts and enforce policies and procedures for how they are used. By taking these steps, companies can effectively manage their privileged accounts and protect themselves from privilege sprawl-related threats.
Ransomware is a malicious form of malware that encrypts or locks files, making them inaccessible to the user. It typically spreads through emails or other means of communication. Ransomware then requests payment from the user to regain access to files. Ransomware typically demands payment with untraceable cryptocurrency. In such cases it becomes extremely difficult for victims to recover their data without a reliable backup. Cybersecurity professionals recommend that teams have a comprehensive security plan in place to protect against ransomware attacks. These include regular backups, patching and updating systems, employee awareness training, and multiple layers of security on all internal networks.
Ransomware as a service (RaaS) is the malicious version of SaaS. Under this model, premade malware is sold to cybercriminals for use in their attacks. It can also refer to the “service” of a hacker restoring access after being paid their ransom. Both instances have dire implications for enterprises. The former lowers the barrier of entry for potential bad actors. The latter costs businesses in capital, reputation, and even legal standing. Cybersecurity officers can sometimes trace a breach or attempted breach back to RaaS. This can prove helpful in tracking down the perpetrator or discovering flaws in the ransomware.
Role-based access control (RBAC) is a security model where access and privileges are based on the user’s role within a team. By instituting a policy of what access is conferred upon specific roles, identities can be automatically provisioned with the features appropriate to them. This model allows for greater control of potentially dangerous privileges by strictly limiting their usage to those who need them.
SANS, or SysAdmin, Audit, Network, and Security, is a major cybersecurity institute. They are responsible for setting most accepted certification standards for IT and data security. The IAM industry often uses the guidelines prescribed by SANS as a reference point for trends and best practices. Additionally, the Institute provides extensive training and certification. These fields include cybersecurity, network defense, penetration testing, incident response, and digital forensics.
Secrets management involves securely storing, managing, and rotating credentials such as passwords, tokens, private keys and certificates. Using a secrets management platform allows organizations to centrally control access to services for both people and applications in a safe and secure manner without having to share or store the actual secret value. By utilizing secrets management, organizations can ensure that credentials are only available to the necessary parties, reducing the risks associated with unauthorized access or malicious actors accessing sensitive data. Furthermore, secrets management helps automate common processes such as password rotation and revocation of credentials, making it easier for organizations to manage their digital authentication environment.
Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) is an XML-based framework used for exchanging authentication and authorization data between parties. It enables organizations to securely share user data across different networks, creating a single sign-on experience for users. Through SAML, organizations can manage the authentication process and provide authorized access to users without requiring them to enter their credentials multiple times. This makes it easier for users to access the systems they need while maintaining a high level of security. By leveraging SAML, companies can reduce their attack surface and ensure that only authorized users can gain access.
The service-level agreement (SLA) is the contract between a customer and their service provider detailing the precise services the customer can expect to receive. These contracts are legally binding and should be the main point of reference for questions about the responsibilities assumed by the provider. SLAs made with managed identity services should emphasize factors such as delivery time, capacity, application integration, and troubleshooting support. The SLA should also specify which stages of the digital transformation are covered, including advisement, implementation, and operations.
Siloed data occurs when a company’s data is stored in separate and isolated systems or databases. This can happen when different departments or units don’t share information with each other. As a result, siloed data prevents teams from getting the full picture of their operations, customers, and market trends. As such, it’s important for companies to create a logical path between data sources. This makes all relevant information easily accessible by decision makers. Doing this will help them make better informed decisions, increase efficiency, and improve customer service.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is a widely used email system used to transmit messages across mail servers. By converting the contents of an email into a standardized text, SMTP allows mail to be sent to different email services. It can also detect issues such as a missing or invalid recipient. Another system called IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) is needed for the message to be received and read.
Single sign-on (SSO) is a secure authentication model wherein one set of credentials is used to access multiple applications. An example would be logging in to a company website and immediately accessing both its employee insurance and workspace pages. SSO can greatly expedite the login process and make systems more secure. Teams accomplish this by reducing the amount of attack surface available by limiting usernames and passwords. However, without an intelligent security system and a carefully considered policy, SSO can grant bad actors greater lateral movement through a single compromised password. As such, SSO is best implemented as part of a comprehensive identity solution.
Software as a service (SaaS) is an emergent business model. SaaS sells software and uses a subscription rather than a traditional hard copy. SaaS allows easier patching and easy downloading off the internet. However, the lack of a physical copy can prove detrimental if service is cut off. In most cases, SaaS provides users with a much more accessible and up to date platform than traditional distribution methods.
Structured query language (SQL) is a commonly used programming language used to process and store data within a relational database. While SQL has seen extensive use in databases, there are some situations where a non-relational database is preferable. In such situations, teams usually implement NoSQL.
Time to value (TTV) measures how quickly a team can benefit from a new product, service, or capability. It combines the time it takes to acquire, deploy, and integrate a given solution. Additionally, TTV measures the ability to positively impact the bottom line. In a rapidly changing business environment, TTV has become increasingly important for teams looking to stay competitive. Companies need to ensure that they can quickly adopt new technologies to remain agile and responsive. Teams must take into consideration factors such as deployment cost and ease of implementation when selecting new solutions. This maximizes TTV and lower the total cost of ownership.
User behavior analytics (UBA) is a powerful cybersecurity tool used to identify and respond to abnormal or suspicious user behavior. UBA works by collecting data on user activities such as login attempts, file accesses, and network accesses. It then analyzes this data for any anomalies or unusual patterns. This helps teams detect malicious activity that may have previously gone undetected. It provides an additional layer of security against cyber threats like insider threats or advanced persistent attacks. By leveraging UBA, teams are able to better protect their networks and sensitive data from potential intruders.
User experience (UX) refers to the design of a product or service (like a website) with the purpose of giving users the best possible interaction with it. Elements of digital UX include intuitive user interface, optimized loading times, interconnected site layout, and meaningful content. UX is a key component of CIAM since its stated goal is to provide customers with a secure and frictionless experience. However, UX is also important for internal users like employees and partners.
A virtual directory acts as a bridge between the authentication infrastructure maintained by teams and cloud applications. This provides single sign-on capabilities for users who need access to both on-premises and cloud-based applications. Virtual directories provide a single point of management for user identity, making control of access levels across different services easier. By using virtual directories, teams can ensure that only authenticated users are able to gain access to systems. This reduces their attack surface area and creating a secure environment for users to work in.
Zero trust is a security concept which ensures that all entities are authenticated and authorized. It focuses on the principle of “never trust, always verify.” This means all users and devices must be properly identified and authenticated in order to access resources. This is achieved by using an array of methods such as MFA, geofencing, and other adaptive authentication techniques. By leveraging Zero Trust within IAM, teams can reduce their risk of unauthorized access to data and systems. This ensures only those with proper credentials can gain access.
IAM solutions and the services that tie them together are a vital and necessary component of all successful modern businesses. By learning the language of identities and access, you are ready to make informed decisions about what your companies needs from an IAM solution.
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