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Cloud Identity and Access Management

Cloud Identity and Access Management

Cloud Identity and Access Management
date_range - 3 months ago

Cloud identity and access management (cloud IAM) is a cloud-based security architecture. Users are verified and their access permissions are controlled, including providing and refusing access credentials.

A cloud-based authentication solution should allow companies to secure and govern access to resources across all domains and platforms, even if it is hosted in the cloud. Users can authenticate from any device at any time, from public and private clouds to on-premises systems.

The average individual utilizes nearly 200 services that require them to enter passwords or other credentials, according to the Digital Shadow Photon Research team.

According to its 2020 report, the dark web had 15 billion stolen credentials that might be used to take over accounts for internet banking, social networking accounts, and music streaming services.

What is Cloud Identity and Access Management (IAM)?

Two of the capabilities of identity and access management solutions are authentication and access control. Cloud IAM enables you to authenticate users regardless of their location and secure access to cloud resources. Customers, employees, and partners can all benefit from IAM solutions, which can be combined to give a comprehensive solution for your business.

Cloud IAM is critical for ensuring security outside of network perimeters, including features such as:

  • Authentication
  • Access management
  • Directory
  • Identity verification
  • Consent collection and data privacy management
  • Risk management
  • Personal identity
  • API security
  • Self-service for users and developers

Authentication

Assuring that someone is who they say they are isn't a novel concept. Authentication brings the process online, requiring several kinds of identification for further protection.

Multi-factor authentication (MFA)

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) includes two-factor authentication and uses two or more authentication elements to validate a user's identity (2FA). Something you know, something you are, and something you have are all examples of authentication factors. Both MFA and 2FA add layers of security to a user's account, preventing hackers from guessing, stealing, or buying passwords or primary credentials.

An enterprise employing MFA may demand a password (something you know), a one-time passcode given to a smartphone or email (something you have), and a fingerprint scan on the smartphone for a high-value transaction (something you are). Access is denied if any of these actions are not completed correctly.

Single sign-on (SSO)

When combined with MFA, single sign-on (SSO) allows users to sign on once with their confirmed credentials to gain access to different services and resources. SSO paired with adaptive authentication allows you to match authentication requirements to the access being requested, requiring more authentication where necessary, such as when logging in from a high-risk IP address.

Access Control

Access management ensures that only the appropriate persons have access to the appropriate resources. Even authenticated users can pose a risk to an organization, therefore the concept of least privilege guarantees that a user's access is limited to only what they need to protect sensitive data.

What are the Advantages of Cloud Identity and Access Management (IAM)?

Comply with Cloud-first Mandates

Because cloud IAM is hosted in the cloud rather than on-prem, which would necessitate investments in equipment and employees, it speeds up deployment. Upgrades are also simpler, especially when the service is managed in the cloud by the provider.

Reduce the cost of IT infrastructure and support

IT teams must manage additional apps, resources, and devices as more individuals work from home and use personal devices for business, shopping, social networking, and other activities. On-prem IAM may be insufficient, and the price of hiring and keeping in-house identity specialists up to date on threats, as well as the costs of procuring and maintaining equipment, continue to climb.

These costs can be drastically lowered by choosing an Identity as a Service (IDaaS) or managed cloud service provider for cloud IAM.

Flexibility and Scalability

When a corporation hires hundreds of new employees at a new location or an eCommerce site runs a campaign to attract thousands of new consumers, cloud IAM solutions are simple to scale for new users.

Boost Security

With features like two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-factor authentication (MFA), Cloud IAM improves security by reducing dependency on passwords and the risk of data breaches caused by compromised credentials.

Enhance the User Experience

Single sign-on streamlines the login procedure and allows users to access resources more quickly and easily.

Minimize Password Reset Requests

IAM solutions reduce the dependency on passwords and the risks connected with passwords that have been stolen or compromised.

Increase Workforce Productivity and Reduce Frustration

Productivity suffers when employees are compelled to create new accounts for each application and use several passwords, which they may forget. IAM helps employees, contractors, and other workers obtain access to the resources they need faster and with less friction by reducing the time spent on logins.

Regulatory Compliance

Cloud IAM enables businesses to comply with open banking standards such as the Payment Service Directive 2 (PSD2) and data privacy laws such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). IAM helps you to quickly adjust and stay in compliance as regulations are changed and new requirements are enacted.

Available Cloud Options?

You may choose the best cloud solution for your goals, budget, and use cases.

  • Public clouds - major cloud service providers, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, host public clouds.
  • Private clouds - the enterprise normally hosts private clouds locally, which gives security and flexibility.
  • Partner clouds - partner clouds are frequently hosted on a public cloud by a partner who manages the infrastructure as a dedicated tenant for the company.
  • Hybrid clouds - hybrid clouds are clouds that combine some or all of the above features. For a combination of security, cost, and flexibility, businesses frequently choose a hybrid cloud solution.
  • Multi-clouds (or multiclouds) - Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform are the three primary public cloud providers. Multi-clouds (or multiclouds) commonly incorporate more than one of these three providers (GCP).

Conclusion

Before providing permission to access information stored on cloud systems, an identity and access management solution checks that users are who they say they are. IAM also controls access permissions, such as allowing or refusing access to new or previous employees.

Cloud IAM provides businesses with a cost-effective way to verify users' identities and grant them access to only the resources they require.

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