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The Trends and Future of Security Identity and Access Management

30 June, 2020

Technology

Protecting Your Business and Optimizing Your Processes is Easier with These 2020 Identity and Access Management Trends

Business leaders across the spectrum of industries recognize that without security everything that you have and everything that you hope for in the future is at risk.

Just imagine for a moment that you are the CEO of a midsize manufacturing firm with operations in China, Taiwan, and the USA. Two thousand employees log into your cloud-based network every day. Doing the math, that’s a minimum of 104,000 logins a year.

What if one of your employees has his/her password written on a piece of paper or on a note in a smartphone that they’ve misplaced on the subway ride into work?

Now a login credential is compromised and your system is at risk.

Are you going to be able to spot the one criminal login out of the 2000 that day and stop the activity before the hacker does real damage?

What about the bots and applications based outside your organization that have daily, credentialed access to your in-house or cloud-based network, data, and workflow?

That’s why every organization needs the 2020 features of Identity and Access management.

In this article, we’ll explore those features together and determine the benefits and advantages each brings to your business.

What is Identity and Access Management?

Identity and Access Management (IAM) is the whole of technologies, policies, and protocols put in place to guarantee that only the users (human or cyber) that are authorized can access data, applications, or other IT assets of a company.

How Do Identity and Access Management Trends Benefit Your Company?

Security is at the heart of IAM features and trends. By protecting your employees login identities, you are able to help secure the systems and workflow of the business.

But although security is the primary reason for a company to invest in Identity and Access Management, it is not the only benefit.

  • Centralized Identity and Access Management – Knowing who has access to your systems, from where, and when, gives you insight and granular control. Centralized IAM is critical to provision new employees with access or to deny access to fired or resigning employees.
  • Improved Login Experience – Frustration is an unfortunate side effect of the self-management of login credentials. People forget. People mistakenly enter the wrong passwords. It’s happened to us all. Identity and Access Management takes all the memory work out of the hands of the end-user and provides them with an easy way to login to their workstations, applications, or cloud workflow.
  • Greater Efficiency – If every day, two of your employees waste fifteen minutes resetting passwords, you’ve lost 130 hours of productivity over the space of a year. Now, take the amount that you are paying those employees by the hour and multiply it by 130 and you’ll come up with the amount of actual money you’ve lost. IAM assists businesses in both cost efficiency and productivity efficiency.

Top 10 Trends in Identity Access Management

Biometrics

Many existing systems already rely on fingerprints, retinal scans, and facial recognition. Improvements to these systems are expected though 2020. Part of the expected improvements has to do with the storage, protection, and control of biometric data. Biometric data breaches in several instances have resulted in the exposure of the biometric data of thousands of individuals. With this data, hackers can more easily access systems, even without the individual’s physical presence.

Blockchain

Blockchain is one of the things that IT security professionals are looking at to secure biometric data (among other data sets). Blockchain allows for granular control and maintenance of identification data ownership within a centralized system.

Self-Sovereign Identity

The concept of Self-Sovereign Identity is becoming more widely expected and demanded. Essentially, the idea is that identifiers belong to the individual and should always be under the individual’s control, not a business or a third-party identity management system. Developers see Blockchain technology in tandem with a decentralized distributed network setup the vehicle for Self-Sovereign Identity facilitation.

Identity Access Management for Cloud Services

Because so many applications and data sets are now being utilized and stored in the cloud, identity management has moved past the local network of the company to include cloud assets. Greater continuity between credentials for on-site and cloud IT assets will be the direction that cybersecurity professionals will be headed in 2020. Cloud User Access Management software is the first big step toward this goal.

Multi-factor Authentication

Anyone that has logged into their Amazon account now knows about multi-factor authentication. Whether the secondary identifier after your password is a code sent to your phone/email or a fingerprint scan, Multifactor Authentication is now mainstream.

Single Sign-On Systems

Single Sign-On Systems are the perfect complement to Multi-factor Authentication technologies. Single Sign-On Systems allow the user to input a single set of credentials to gain the network access, data access, application access, web access, and cloud access associated with their role.

The Internet of Things and IAM

IoT device identity verification and IoT device access to networks and applications is a concern. The number of devices and endpoints connected to the IT systems of companies worldwide has exploded. As a result, securing the access those IoT devices have to business networks has become a high priority. Pushing computational requirements out to endpoints is one of the ways that IT security professionals see this situation being resolved.

Context-Based Identity Verification

Determining the identity of an individual, bot, or application has moved beyond passwords and fingerprints to the individual factors of the “environment” of the requested access. User behavior, preferences, location, IP address, and dozens of other factors are assembled as a factor in identity determination. This capability will only grow as Big Data plays an increasing role in this field.

AI and Machine Learning

AI and Machine Learning plays a part in Context-Based Identity Verification. In this case, Big Data is used to power analytics to determine patterns of user (whether human or cyber) behaviour. Along with verifying identity, AI and Machine Learning can spot anomalies that could indicate deceptive login behavior and send alerts to cybersecurity management.

Non-People Identity Access

As we have previously discussed, access by individuals is not the only thing that Identity and Access Management covers. Services, cloud, applications, and bots access business systems every day for legitimate reasons and their identity must be verified. As business process automation grows in power and popularity, Non-People Identity Access is going to have a critical role in protecting the IT assets of companies worldwide.

IAM Analytics

The survey of data produced by IAM software will be one of the things that we will be seeing IT specialists utilize to help businesses understand the who, when, what, and where of access to the company’s systems. Risks that once may have slipped through the cracks, such as misconfigurations, over-permissions, and breaches of compliance and governance will be brought to light.

Least Privilege and Zero Trust Access

Least Privilege and Zero Trust Access is a policy concept that has been in practice for a long while. Least Privilege and Zero Trust Access says that an individual needs as little access to the company system as is necessary to accomplish their tasks. Pushing this same policy across all users – including cyber – will continue to be rolled out throughout organizations this year. 

Want to know more about how to protect your employee’s identity credentials and secure your company against suspicious access by bots and software? Contact the Pronix team.