Cloud adoption cannot wait. Gartner analysts say that from 30% in 2021, over 95% of new digital workloads will be hosted on cloud-native platforms by 2025. It reaps significant benefits such as cost reduction, flexibility, and scalability and drives business growth. So, why are some enterprises still reluctant to commit to cloud? What are their asks and misgivings?
The threat perception is unprecedented. Digital businesses face real cyber security risks or live in its dread. It is an outstanding challenge not only for first-time users but also for bigger enterprises that have already adopted a full or partial migration strategy. Ransomware and other malicious actors and vectors have led to significant business losses and data breaches to fuel these fears.
Roadmap to cyber resilience – keys to the kingdom
According to experts, 90% of businesses will end up sharing sensitive data by 2025 if they fail to control public cloud use. From email phishing to identity thefts, DDoS to stealing admin control – the threats are clear and immediate. So, how can enterprises ward off cyberattacks and fortify their digital perimeters? Cyber setbacks can be resisted, or their blast radius contained through the continuous and strict enforcement of the best practices of digital security, a Zero Trust philosophy, and identity governance and administration (IGA).
The best practices of cyber security known to generate favorable outcomes are time-honored and industry vetted. The first step is to educate the end-users, across your enterprise and outside it. Knowledge sharing with all stakeholders is of critical consequence. Other exercises include backing up your critical data, applying security patches and operating system patches, installing timely software updates, and implementing disaster recovery mechanisms as and when required.
Security solutions are also crucially important. From monitoring end-point security controls to running regular checks on connected devices, identity management (IdM) to encrypting everything – these checks and balances can set up the environment for enhanced data security and better workflow visibility. The digitized architecture of online security is built on the premise and scope of IdM. Having a strong password, a password list that removes personal credentials, a multifactor authentication process for your log-in journey and screening access through IGA are the best safeguards of identity hygiene.
Adopting a Zero Trust philosophy complements this process. Being premised on the “never trust, always verify” code of identity management, it implicitly trusts nothing. This translates to a design of security controls that studies context-based transactions between users, classification of data, location of devices, networks, and services.
Long-term benefits of IGA compliance – go granular for business gains
Data access permissions depend on the current maturity of access requests and offer the least privilege access. IGA has evolved from IdM. For instance, the joiner, mover, and leaver (JML) and user access certification requirement tracks the entire life cycle of all employees and other managed users alike. It fuels the IGA process flow. IGA solutions can also address the demand for the management of roles and entitlements within the cloud in compliance with governance initiatives. AL and ML can be leveraged to detect and identify outlier access requests and process access recommendations.
Compliance benefits of IGA can generate long-term business gains. Role-based access controls (RBACs) and attribute-based access controls (ABACs) are authorization strategies that monitor user life cycles. They shorten timelines and execute bulk additions and user account transitions by streamlining the approval process. AI and ML can also carry access governance features that facilitate access request recommendations and separation of duty (SOD) requests, monitor outlier access requests, and run account reviews.
Additionally, they reduce the generation of tickets and support self-service capabilities like password changes and profile updates. This ultimately leads to cost reduction. Creating a clear audit trail of security compliance yields its benefits. It streamlines automation and supports the continual reporting and monitoring of capabilities. Events are handled better by provisioning for emergency access. The deployment of application connectors, both on-premises and in the cloud, also results in faster time to market (TTM). It is an easy way to integrate SaaS platforms and data sources.
Similarly, while permission-based access may work well for your workforce, how does a business resist cyberattacks vectored through third parties such as SaaS applications and a hybrid cloud environment? Bringing together component subsystems through system integrator (SI) capabilities and implementation can redefine the application development landscape. Accelerating the process of application onboarding with a single sign-on (SSO) and identity governance perspective can deliver greater resilience and visibility, while also verifying input data to validate IGAs.
Driving change through partnerships
Taking the great leap forwards requires organizations to collaborate with industry experts and achieve an effective decentralization of their identity and access management governance. This means harness cutting-edge AI and ML capabilities that minimize your organization’s risk exposure. And with the help of managed cybersecurity providers, enterprises can migrate to the cloud with a trusted eco-system in place which integrates their legacy digital infrastructure with emerging technologies.
Taking such an approach would allow companies to build IGA systems which offer proactive access recommendations while also monitoring cognitive-intelligence monitored role-based requests. With such a 360-degree approach, next generation organizations can focus on driving their core business and rely on a trusted partner to safeguard their security requirements.