Privileged Access Management helps to surmount a large number of complex access management challenges. Its significance is rising exponentially. As it continues to remain among the top 10 IT security solutions, iConnect is listing in this blog some of the major trends shaping the PAM market in 2023.
The size of enterprise IT infrastructure continues to grow. Furthermore, these massive IT infrastructures are dispersed across numerous cloud platforms and on-premises data centers. From a security standpoint, the changing IT landscape is becoming increasingly difficult to manage. The challenges for IT infrastructure and security teams have been exacerbated by network threats, device threats, and user threats.
Privileged access management (PAM) will become even more important in this context. A well-developed PAM supports a wide range of use cases that necessitate rule- and role-based access to target systems. A solid PAM solution, in terms of security and compliance, provides the necessary safeguards and tools for monitoring, controlling, and auditing digital identities.
However, it is important to understand that enterprises never have static PAM requirements.
The use cases and infrastructure requirements are constantly evolving. As a result, a mature PAM must adapt to these new requirements and expectations.
The year 2022 was no different. New use cases continued to emerge. While security and risk management leaders accelerated their adoption of the just-in-time access approach, managing machine identities was the hot topic in 2022. Will 2023 be any different?
To answer this question, iConnect reached out to its business development team, which travelled around the world throughout 2022 evangelizing iConnect’s PAM offerings, as well as its solution architects, who managed complex and large PAM projects. Of course, the global IT practitioners, IT security heads, CIOs, CISOs, and CTOs with whom we interacted continuously during global IT security summits in 2022 shared their perspectives as well.
If “orphaned” privileged accounts are misused, the threat vector can be catastrophic. This grave challenge has been exacerbated further as IT teams are required to manage all privileged accounts in an increasingly heterogeneous environment.
In addition to legacy applications with privileged accounts in an on-premises environment, IT teams must track privileged accounts found across multiple systems hosted on cloud platforms such as AWS, Azure, and GCP.
As a result, while implementing or refreshing the IT infrastructure with PAM systems in 2023, information security professionals will prioritize auto-discovery capability for discovering, identifying, and onboarding privileged accounts in the PAM solution.
In addition to auto-discovery in inventory management, IT professionals believe that onboarding all privileged accounts to PAM systems is critical for successful PAM initiatives.
Administrators can use onboarding to add new server groups and user accounts with privileges to a single PAM instance, allowing them to auto-provision and deprovision users or devices by interacting with Active Directory.
ARCON | PAM’s auto-discovery module can discover, identify, and onboard privileged accounts, as well as support periodic, ad hoc, or continuous discovery scans.
ARCON Privileged Access Management’s auto-onboarding module automates the onboarding of all privileged accounts in the following categories:
Global organizations have been rapidly adopting cloud technologies to scale their IT operations, especially after the pandemic. Agile development platforms, proliferation of business applications for day-to-day administration, among other cloud services, have increased the importance of cloud technologies.
Having said that, many organizations feel unprepared or reluctant to migrate their entire IT infrastructure to the cloud. Because many IT teams still manage legacy applications, directories, and other processes including IT workloads in on-premises data centers, this is the case. While some organizations avoid migrating their total infrastructure to the cloud due to IT security concerns, other organizations are sometimes reluctant to adopt cloud computing for other considerations like migration costs or tinkering with legacy systems.
Consequently, organizations are extremely particular about what sort of hybrid environment will work best for them in terms of operational efficiency and administrative ease.
Therefore, both on-cloud and on-premises infrastructure will co-exist. It is this very reason why IT security professionals feel that a PAM solution must support hybrid data center environments.
They want a single PAM instance that would enable them to seamlessly integrate all on-premises and on-cloud IT resources within one unified access control framework.
Almost three out of four organizations have adopted multi-cloud platforms nowadays. It helps meet the requirements arising from increasing daily IT computational, operational, and infrastructure use cases through various cloud platforms. The solution offerings and technologies offered by platforms such as AWS, Azure, and GCP are being rolled out at a very rapid pace. Therefore, to keep abreast of the latest technologies, organizations are embracing new cloud technologies to enhance their IT operations and administrations. Invariably, it results in organizations adopting multi cloud environments. Nevertheless, every cloud console has its own set of policy definitions for access control. As a result, it becomes a huge challenge for the IT security staff to manage, monitor, and control the increasing number of identities in the multi cloud setup.
There are instances where enterprises end up creating several overprivileged identities or privileged cloud entitlements that are never revoked due to the lack of IT visibility. In other words, there is no single interface to administer the cloud entitlements spread across many cloud platforms. Managing multiple cloud consoles increases administrative challenges, which is risky from a security perspective.
Identity governance has become an increasingly important discipline in the overall identity and access management framework. The main objective of IAM and PAM is to ensure that the right end user has access to the right systems at the right time and for the right purpose. Accordingly, access management controls such as fine-grained restrictive access, rule and role bound access, and just-in-time provisioning and access are implemented to control and monitor the end users.
Nonetheless, managing privileged access environments has become increasingly difficult from a governance standpoint, with a large number of human and non-human identities dispersed in a distributed environment. For modern-day organizations, it is also imperative to validate each identity, its role, and its access at regular intervals. Identity governance enables IT security and risk management leaders to establish a progressive risk assessment practice that eventually leads to improved identity lifecycle management.
Identity governance essentially provides the capability to authorize privilege assignment, and periodically review and validate privileged access, along with ensuring the segregation of roles and responsibilities as per the policies.
Therefore, IT practitioners are looking to embed identity governance and analytics tools in their PAM systems. It helps to build a stronger security and compliance posture.
Our two modules: User Access Governance and the Knight Analytics makes identity governance a seamless task
With ARCON’s User Access Governance, IT infrastructure and security teams can:
ARCON’s highly effective AI-based Knight Analytics tool helps to:
We have observed that the Zero Trust security framework is now going mainstream. IT professionals are of the opinion that user authentication and authorization at every level of access is important to thwart misuse of the trusted privileges. Indeed, enterprise IT perimeter is no longer confined to on-premises datacenter. As modern day IT infrastructure is large, distributed in hybrid and multi-cloud setups, IT security leaders have opined to build micro-segmentation and micro-perimeters for controlling digital identities. By implementing the Zero Trust framework, security leaders can ensure continuous and contextual authentication of users.
ARCON | PAM is a purpose-built solution to achieve the desired level of Zero Trust security in the privileged access environment. The solution has a high level of maturity when it comes to verifying the “trust.” IT security practitioners who implement ARCON PAM can configure several tests before establishing trust.
Not only can trust in the privileged identity be established through the use of various features and functionalities such as the workflow approval matrix, virtual grouping for roles segregation, user and service provisioning, and policy enforcements, but other components such as device and location verification can also be performed. It helps build the foundation of the Zero Trust framework by creating micro segmentation and micro-perimeters for privileged identities.
Furthermore, the solution provides network overlays, network encryption, software defined perimeter (SDP), host-based agents to implement network security, and micro segmentation of the network.
And last but not least, the ARCON Knight Analytics module provides constant monitoring of the who, when, and what of digital identity. The tool improves risk prediction by detecting anomalies or threats at an early stage, allowing the user’s trustworthiness to be verified.
Emerging technologies will continue to bring new use cases that require enterprise IT infrastructure and security teams to implement privileged access management practices. However,the effectiveness of a PAM solution will depend on the scalability of its architecture and its identity security and governance capabilities.
ARCON | PAM provides: