When we talk about identity, we should consider that it is a key factor in the context that defines today’s access policies. The trend of people working from hotel rooms, trains, cafés and homes increases day by day and IAM has become the primary element for ensuring that only authorised people from authorised locations access authorised resources.

Most security professionals know that there is no simple solution for protecting companies. It refers to a coordinated defence involving people, processes and tools that span anti-malware, application, server, and network access control, intrusion detection and prevention, security event monitoring, and more. But what about identity and access management (IAM) – our particular focus at PATECCO?

Actually IAM provides information about how employees and customers have accessed applications – who logged in when and what data they accessed. Corporations can use this information for security and forensics purposes and for understanding typical patterns of interaction, as well. For example: How employees work and how customers buy products and conduct transactions on the company’s website and mobile apps.

In our practice we always use the right IAM preventive and detective controls that help our customers to prevent, detect or mitigate the attack. It all starts with getting visibility and control over user access privileges for highly sensitive data or applications. This means putting in place IAM tools to ensure the right access controls are in place and that user access privileges conform to policy. We also ensure that a centralised directory is put in place. Those with admin access must be able to access this instantly, to view and modify access rights as and when needed. The other step is the creation of unique user accounts, so that every staff member has their unique ID and password. In this way, specific users can be traced via their credentials.

Automated workflows are also useful as they enable access request and approval to be managed with the option of several different levels of reviews and approval. Our IAM Professionals enforce a strong password policy which helps for preventing unauthorised access of this data.

Enforce the principle of least privilege is of a great importance because nobody should have access to any data other than data that is strictly needed for them to do their jobs. Furthermore, privileged users should have additional security controls placed on them. For example, multi-factor authentication can be useful.

The overall IAM process refers to co-operation between processes, people and technology. Implementing the right IAM controls can help you mitigate risks and more effectively protect critical resources and customers’ data. IAM systems prevent hackers from escalating privileges and gaining access to sensitive applications and data once they have compromised an employee’s credentials. IAM also helps to satisfy compliance mandates around separation of duties, enforcing and auditing access policies to sensitive accounts and data, and making sure users do not have excessive privileges. It also ensures maintenance of strong vigilance and prevention of threats that can be identified.