The Starting Point: 3 Steps to Begin a PAM Implementation

  January 26th, 2021
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Modern-day privilege access and cybersecurity needs can seem daunting. Security breaches of privileged accounts and related vulnerabilities have accelerated in recent years due to increased IT infrastructure complexities and the fragmented distribution of business critical services.

Add to this data points like 80% of organizations discovered that a privileged access policy violation had occurred within the preceding 12 months, and 87% of these businesses experienced a policy violation that resulted in significant impacts to business operations, according to leading industry analyst firm EMA. The need for privileged access management (PAM) to solve contemporary business requirements is definitive.

Many IT leaders recognize these intimidating numbers, challenges, and the necessity for privilege access management, but are unsure where to start a PAM deployment within their organization. It’s not as difficult as many imagine. Creating a PAM solution that’s self-sufficient and financially advantageous begins with these three best practices, crafting a PAM program destined for success.

1. Groom champions throughout your organization.

PAM systems will impact many individuals across an organization, so it makes sense to begin by identifying individuals who are not only stakeholders but also naturally inclined to support PAM deployment on grounds such as security and benefits. These PAM ambassadors can include everyone from developers and network operations staff to database administrators.

Start by training and giving them educational materials to build a knowledge base and share with colleagues. Provide them with a forum to contribute, raise concerns, request feature enhancements and additional documentation should they need it. Supporting these champions and adjusting project priorities (as required) will transform them into program advocates.

2. Deploy incrementally.

The number of shared, privileged accounts in an organization can be as much as three times larger than the number of people. These privileged accounts are present on every IT asset with many running on different platforms. Combine this exponential reality with the sheer amount of operations for credential access and configuring them all simultaneously is infeasible.

This exponential reality can make many network administrators apprehensive about a PAM transformation. Therefore, create a realistic and workable deployment that adds capabilities one or two at a time, migrates the resulting system to production use, re-prioritizes, and delivers again. By utilizing a steady, phased, and practical implementation, organizations will set achievable goals that IT leadership and stakeholders can get behind and applaud.

3. Maintain tight restrictions initially, then relaxed conditions if required.

When defining access and control policies, start with firm systems. For example, start with short limits on maximum check-out duration, require long and complex passwords, and do not allow plaintext password disclosure.

It’s much easier to begin with sturdy controls and relax them later on if needed than starting with lax rules and tightening them later. Users are more likely to object if that’s the case.

Building the foundation for your successful PAM deployment with these three measures is only the beginning of your PAM deployment strategy. Learn more by downloading our ebook: Deploying a Privileged Access System: 9 Actionable Strategies to Ensure Success.

Building a Sturdy Foundation for Identity Access Management Implementation

  January 21st, 2021
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The biggest question many organizations need to answer: Identity and access management is constantly evolving — is yours?

In 2021, it’s estimated that businesses without formal IAM programs will spend 40% more on IAM capabilities while achieving less than those with them. Organizations with IAM programs need to continually develop and advance theirs over time, and they will need a permanent team and partnerships to continue the evolution and management of it. And, by building a successful and engaging IAM program, they will not only spend less, but achieve more in the long-term.

Each iteration of IAM implementation follows the same simple guidelines and four steps:

  • Identifying key stakeholders
  • Defining the vision
  • Building the roadmap
  • Defining the architecture

Every stage of the plan during the first round is straightforward, and each successive cycle will be more effortless than the last. By following them, you can foster repeated identity access management advancement.

Build a Foundation.

The first step of an optimization journey begins with identifying key stakeholders. Although identification is at the heart of this action, it is also about determining what drives these important process partners. A successful first step will build the foundation for every iterative cycle that follows, so it’s paramount to look at it in greater detail.

IAM leaders should recognize that enterprise IAM role management, groups, privilege access, and governance is a unique arena that requires a specialized framework and methodology. With this in mind, IT decision makers should launch the initiative in advance to provide ample time.

Due to its specialized framework and methodology, the IAM implementation requires a diverse and committed group of stakeholders and their representatives within the organization: those who influence and benefit from the IAM program. Examples of a stakeholder and stakeholder representative includes end users and a service desk manager or network security and director of security. The goal is not to create experts or IAM experts out of these representatives, but rather to empower them to evangelize and demonstrate the program deliverables — scope and priorities are important to the larger audience.

It’s also important to understand what stakeholders and their representatives’ version of success looks like. This includes establishing common goals across departments and building trust within the organization, but also working through issues such as lack of recognition, lack of interest, and conflicting needs. To keep stakeholders invested, continue to align with their goals, build consensus, and continually reassess. Success will be measured against an IT leader’s ability to adjust to change and stakeholder input.

Lastly, IT decision makers should always have a champion. This individual can work with vendors and external stakeholders to advocate for the IAM solution.

Once key stakeholders and their primary drivers have been identified, an organization is ready for the next steps in this iterative process, which involve redefining the business across its vision, roadmap, and architecture. But much like the first step, it requires a thoughtful approach to succeed.

Find Success With Your IAM Implementation

Accelerate your IAM implementation with the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric. This best in class solution empowers organizations to better navigate the difficult terrain of increasingly complex threats with a resilient, flexible, single identity and access management (IAM) platform and framework. Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric — which brings together the layers of Identity, Pass, Privilege, Group, and Discover — is dynamic, iterative, and optimized to protect, manage, and govern digital identity and access infrastructure in today’s ever evolving landscape.

Watch the webinar from our Power of One Summit to explore the additional three stages of a successful identity access management program implementation.

IAM Implementations Meet the Challenges of the New Higher Education Paradigm

  January 19th, 2021
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In the current climate, higher education institutions face numerous extraordinary challenges in managing identity and crisis. Remote access has become the norm, introducing new variables to the higher education equation as students, staff, and alumni have unprecedented access to a growing number of resources that are also open to attack.

Furthermore, higher education budgets continue to be in flux forcing IT and security teams to reduce risk and operate with fewer resources. Automation has become necessary to make this new educational organization equation add up. It is the vital business enabler that empowers your organization to do more with less and is paramount to identity and access management’s (IAM) success in this new remote access paradigm.

Many higher education IT leaders acknowledge this emerging need for IAM, consistently implementing it across their organizations. However, a recent survey from Hitachi ID and Pulse uncovers a discrepancy between the IAM processes currently in place and what best practices genuinely are — especially when it comes to the benefits of IAM automation. Across a large sampling of higher education institutions, IT decision-makers have implemented IAM but are conflicted between the benefits of governance and automation.

The Conflict: IAM Implementation vs. IAM Best Practice

When asked if a governance-first initiative is the most effective way to initiate and manage an ongoing IAM program, almost all of the surveyed IT leaders at higher education institutions claim that access governance is the best approach to IAM. In fact, of the 98% who have implemented an IAM program, almost two-thirds have invested in IAM governance, including 52% who have also implemented IAM automation.

When higher education IT leaders were asked if their organization had made investments in access governance or identity and access automation, however, the results demonstrated a disconnect between IAM beliefs and action:

  • 52% had invested in both access governance and automation
  • 33% had invested in just access automation
  • 13% had invested in only access governance
  • 2% had invested in neither governance nor automation

Moreover, while these leaders say governance is the best approach, 97% also claim that IAM automation is necessary to maintain compliance. This statistic further reiterates the clash between what respondents have implemented today and what best practices truly are for IAM processes.

The Resolution: Automation Benefits and Goals Drive Convergence on IAM Implementation

Despite this divide between beliefs and practices, the data demonstrates that higher education IT leaders are looking to complement access governance with automation. Most institutions are planning to automate their IAM completely. This best-practice combination has been recognized by IT leadership as a way forward in this digital and remote access-first environment to boost the productivity and security of their organizations.

Already, 64% of IT leaders at higher education institutions have automated IAM processes like provisioning and deprovisioning of students, faculty, and alumni, but there are still many recognized areas of opportunity, including:

  • Life cycle management
  • Self-service requests
  • Risk score assignment

However, they admit that the only thing holding back further implementation are budget and existing infrastructure investments. Despite these barriers, approximately two-thirds of higher education IT decision-makers see it as an opportunity to reduce security risk, boost confidence in compliance status, and make a conscious shift from reactive to proactive threat detection. Moreover, almost all IT leaders see IAM implementation as an opportunity to improve the end-user experience in the wake of a year of mass work-from-home migrations, rising layoffs, and an ever-growing list of remotely accessed resources.

In a year filled with so many of these unforeseen changes and a new dynamic digital-first higher education paradigm, IAM automation and governance are the best-practice methods to meet these challenges with a proactive and future-focused strategy.

Review additional results of our survey and learn more about IAM automation for higher education in our free resource: Higher Education IT Leaders Are Looking to Complement Access Governance With Automation.

Leaders Value These Key Identity and Access Management Automation Payoffs

  January 15th, 2021
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Identity and access management (IAM) automation is an undeniable game changer in higher education, with countless advantages for colleges and universities. So, when we recently worked with Pulse to survey IT leaders in higher education, we were a little surprised by the narrow scope of some of the results. When asked what automation benefits they’re most looking forward to, most of the answers centered around three categories:

  • Reduced security risk
  • Boosted confidence in compliance status
  • A shift from reactive to proactive threat detection

All of these are certainly key benefits for higher education; however, the payoffs for colleges and universities go well beyond these three. Automation can increase efficiency, resiliency, and accuracy in a number of ways.

More Time for Strategic Initiatives

While just over a third of respondents showed interest in this benefit, the importance of time saved cannot be overstated. Institutions that no longer have to spend time manually managing IAM can instead dedicate those resources to more innovative projects. Whether it’s app development, streamlining processes across departments, or focusing on end user experience, removing the more time-consuming parts of identity and access management allows colleges and universities to devote more resources towards strategic thinking.

Improved End User Experience

With so many other priorities to manage, user experience can get left behind. Our recent survey certainly reflected that: only 13% of respondents noted it as an expected benefit. Overlooking this vital piece of the IAM roadmap may expedite processes in the short-term, but poor UX can create extra work (i.e., onboarding challenges and overall usage issues) down the road if neglected for too long.

Simplified Workflows and Streamlined, Modernized Processes

Never underestimate the power of simpler processes. These automation bonuses may have only sparked excitement in around 10% of our IT leaders, but these streamlined workflows can make all the difference for universities. This is especially true for larger institutions who are tasked with identity and access management across multiple departments and colleges where automation can save countless hours.

Hurdles That are Holding Back Critical Growth

Unfortunately, due to obstacles faced by much of higher education, that automation panacea is still a ways off. The following hurdles are holding back critical growth for identity and access management in higher education and overcoming them will be crucial for success in the future.

Budget Constraints

Pre-pandemic, higher education was already facing budget cuts. Now, Covid-19 has only further intensified financial constraints. IT departments at colleges and universities, in particular, have been faced with unforeseen challenges as they were forced to quickly adapt for remote learning and then strengthen these swift solutions as the pandemic stretched on. Of course, this increase in internal IT demand had its own financial outlays and was simultaneously coupled with schools needing to tighten their budgets even further.

In our survey, all IT leaders agreed that budget is a primary roadblock for identity and access management automation. While there’s no easy solution for these financial hurdles, clearly communicating the full value of IAM automation (long-term cost savings, more efficient processes, fewer errors, etc.) will strengthen efforts to implement these essential processes and solutions.

Existing Infrastructure Investments

Legacy systems make those budget constraints even more challenging to overcome, as many schools have put significant amounts of time and financial investment into these systems and processes. Making the switch to a new automated system is about more than the financial cost, it’s also the time needed to onboard and implement that new technology — especially training teams and getting them up to speed with the new IAM solution.

All IT leaders we surveyed selected this as an impediment on the road to automation. Understanding that the investment — both time and cost — is worth the increase in efficiency, security, and so much more will allow colleges and universities to expedite their automation journey.

Executive Buy-in

Ultimately, automating identity and access management in higher education requires that IT leaders achieve buy-in from all decisions makers. While those in the trenches of the IT department may have a clear understanding of the benefits of automation, communicating that with the C-suite can present its own challenges.

While three-quarters of respondents identified executive buy-in as an automation hindrance, for schools struggling to convince decision makers of the value, it can be the sole roadblock to automation. As is the case with budget constraints, presenting the ROI of automation (time saved, decrease in human error, and as a result, reduced long-term costs) will be key in convincing leadership to commit to this essential evolution.

All of these challenges certainly present stumbling blocks on the path to IAM automation for colleges and universities. Clear communication of the return on this investment will be critical as higher education IAM moves forward.

Reputation Is Everything

Most end users may not be a decision maker at any colleges and universities, but they’re still certainly stakeholders when it comes to identity and access management. Whether it’s a student needing to reset their password from home or a new research project that requires specific entitlements, the process needs to be seamless, simple, and secure.

Clunky processes can create frustration for the end user (at best) and serious system vulnerabilities (at worst). It’s also worth noting that ultimately, when it comes to IAM processes, the opinions of end users can and do influence those who make the decisions.

End User Experience Also Has Pull

For many of these questions, the results matched the trends we’re witnessing in IAM for higher education. However, a few categories had some surprises, among them, end user experience (UX).

While only 13% of higher education IT executives cited the improvement of end user experience as a main benefit of IAM automation, two-thirds rated the influence of UX over the IAM roadmap as at least a 4 (on a scale of 1-5). End user experience isn’t driving IAM automation, but it still has plenty of pull when it comes to automation. Understanding its influence can help higher education better incorporate UX into automation plans moving forward.

Amplified by Remote Access

While remote access has always played a role in UX, the pandemic has made it a priority. Our survey reflected that 98% of those surveyed said UX improvement has risen in importance following the mass work-from-home migration and the broad swath of resources being accessed remotely. Remote access has also added another dimension to UX with IT teams needing to account for how remote students and faculty can reach support (for password problems or more serious issues) when the need arises.

Lighten the Load

While the end user is the focus of UX, higher education IT teams will also reap some of the benefits. Seamless, simple, secure IAM that’s easy to use and incorporates support solutions that users can access remotely, will ultimately remove many of those tasks (password resets, permission updates, etc.) from the IT team’s to-do list. Fewer user issues means less problem solving for your IT team, freeing them to focus on more strategic initiatives — further improving processes, application development, or whatever innovation is next.

User Experience Smart From the Start

UX may not be the driving force for higher education IAM automation, but IT leaders still need to keep its impact and influence in mind when plotting out their identity and access management roadmaps. When higher education IT leaders incorporate UX into IAM automation strategies from the start, they can stay ahead of any complications and ensure IAM automation benefits all stakeholders.

Get our one minute whitepaper to read the full results of our survey and learn more about IAM automation challenges and benefits for higher education in our resource:

Higher Education IT Leaders Are Looking to Complement Access Governance With Automation.

Join Hitachi ID and Pulse for an upcoming webinar to learn more about how higher education is using automation to complement identity and access management governance in their zero trust strategies to protect data against cyber security attacks.

How to Complete Your Zero Trust Mission With a Single Pane of Glass

  January 14th, 2021
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Since it was first coined by Forrester more than a decade ago, the Zero Trust model has proven its strength in identity and access management (IAM), relying on strict controls and not trusting anything by default. The events of 2020 have made Zero Trust (ZT) a priority once again as remote working requirements expanded every organizations’ networks well beyond the office walls.

The flexibility of the cloud made the swift shift to remote work possible, but it also introduced more than a few challenges for IAM and ZT. The challenges are compounded by the hybrid situations most companies find themselves in: still unable to move everything to the cloud while simultaneously in search of solutions that can better integrate with their on-premise and legacy systems. Unfortunately, this has often resulted in a disconnected patchwork of not quite connected quick fixes.

Piecemeal solutions are not sustainable. Businesses need one source of truth — one pane of glass — that brings all of these otherwise disparate technologies together in one platform. This saves organizations time and resources, keeps costs down, and seriously simplifies processes for IT teams.

The Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric gets organizations over these hurdles by bringing all of these critical needs into one solution and framework including Pass, Identity, Group, Privilege, and Discover. By shifting to a single pane of glass for IAM, organizations are able to better see the big picture and conquer even the most persistent challenges to achieve ZT success.

Bridge the Gaps

For many businesses, moving to the cloud is not a simple migration. It’s likely done in stages. Some businesses may even have highly regulated data that can’t be stored in the cloud at all and need to find hybrid solutions. On-premise and legacy problems don’t just go away when cloud services are introduced. Having a solution that can seamlessly integrate the cloud with existing architectures is a critical success factor.

The Hitachi Bravura Security Fabric and its extensive set of connectors significantly simplifies the integration of disparate systems. These connector capabilities are also core to the offerings within Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric, allowing organizations to easily turn on or off services (Pass, Identity, Group, Privilege, and Discover) as their business needs change.

Get a Handle on Groups

Across most industries, groups reign supreme as the primary access granting system for organizations. Keeping group access organized is a crucial aspect of maintaining a ZT model. All too often this is where wires get crossed — either by human error or a lack of access to controls beyond the IT team. Granting incorrect permissions via groups can spell disaster.

Organizations can avoid catastrophe with a few simple best practices: allow users group management access, automate where possible, create business friendly names for groups, etc. Hitachi ID Bravura Group can help your IT team easily oversee all of these group activities to maintain visibility and control over these critical access points. By balancing user access with IT oversight, organizations can maintain IAM and ZT success.

Increase Resiliency With Adaptive Authentication

As our recent survey uncovered, remote access remains a top IAM challenge and priority for many organizations. User authentication and password management is a critical component of remote access strategies and the ZT model. With remote access, IT teams face challenges caused by overly simple, misplaced, and generally compromised passwords and credentials. Remote working environments have only increased the risk surrounding these vulnerabilities, especially with insufficient support access.

Hitachi ID Bravura Pass helps businesses tackle these risks by providing resources to help users better manage their own credentials, including:

  • Strong authentication (MFA) and federated access (Security Assertions Markup Language (SAML) 2.0 identity provider (IdP) )
  • Self-service password and PIN reset
  • Self-service unlock of encrypted drives
  • Password synchronization
  • Managed enrollment of security questions, mobile phone numbers, personal e-mail addresses and biometrics

The Future of Zero Trust in the Cloud

Cloud environments present a fresh host of IAM and ZT challenges and the fact is siloed technologies cannot address these issues. By bringing together the tools to manage all of these business-critical pieces in one place, companies have a comprehensive collection of tools and resources that streamlines IAM in a single, secure, scalable solution.

We covered all of this and more in our recent webinar with Hitachi ID partner IntiGrow. As a leading global enterprise information security company and one of our channel partners, IntiGrow delivers comprehensive security solutions empowering enterprises to proactively detect and prevent security threats to their computing infrastructure, data, and applications.

Learn more about IntiGrow and the rest of our channel partners here and see the full webinar now available on demand by following this link: Complete Your Zero Trust Mission Using a Single Pane of Glass

UCSF Higher Education IAM Case Study

  January 12th, 2021
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In higher education the challenges of identity and access management (IAM) are many, and for the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), they had the usual obstacles: ever-increasing number of users with changeable and overlapping roles to account for (students, professors, faculty), plus the need to secure all of their personal data, data related to research projects, and federally funded grants. In addition an aging mainframe system sat at the core of their IAM environment and retiring it was of utmost importance since administrators with expertise in it were retiring quickly!

However, because UCSF is both a university and a hospital (with its own interlaced medical teaching needs), the IAM security environment is even more complicated. Multiple data sources combined with loose affiliations for members including students, teachers, staff, residents, nurses, doctors, researchers, guests, volunteers and contractors made the quality of the data unreliable.

That’s why after 20 years of coping with these mounting challenges, UCSF knew it was time to modernize its decades-old IAM system. The challenge? How to replace a legacy identity system that was deeply entangled with core business processes while keeping the older systems alive and minimizing risk to the university. Of course, there’s no easy answer, but ultimately it came down to finding the right approach:

Do the Research

Understanding what the best solution for their IAM challenges was a multi-step process unto itself. UCSF knew it needed one data source to automate provisioning, synchronize systems of record, and streamline appropriate access through the identity lifecycle with a highly secure yet publicly accessible identity solution. They also knew they needed to not only solve current challenges, but also plan for the future with a system that was capable of scaling and evolving to meet them.

Kevin Dale, senior manager of identity and access management at UCSF brought the project from concept to completion and conducted thorough research of the vendor landscape before beginning this critical transformation. Casting a wide net not only allowed him to vet potential vendors, it also brought to light what capabilities are being offered in the marketplace. Demonstrations and discussions with peers and reference clients helped validate the decision, making the next step infinitely simpler.

Prioritize Projects

For colleges and universities, an IAM upgrade is an enormous, multi-faceted project that impacts nearly every department. It’s not a solution that can be simply switched on. Implementation takes time and coordination to ensure that risk was mitigated to the greatest extent possible. That’s why UCSF knew it needed to prioritize the features and technology that were most critical.

For UCSF, the prioritized must-have features included password management and good connectors, including one for Active Directory supporting group management, identity lifecycle, access management and governance. Identifying these must-haves allowed the university to more clearly map out its roadmap and assisted in the vendor selection process by eliminating those who didn’t fit those needs.

Get Everyone on Board

With multiple departments, colleges, and the hospital to coordinate, having complete buy-in was an absolute must. Nine departments worked to promote adoption across the campus. The effort was spearheaded by the IT team, which outlined concrete deliverables: replacing the mainframe, introducing Hitachi ID Bravura Identity, production deployment, automating and standardizing provisioning and deactivations, and more.

By frequently communicating prioritized outcomes linked to timelines, the stakeholders helped foster partnerships with staff and kept the project on track and on budget. That included the critical step of training everyone on how to use the new Hitachi ID solution and augmented skills as needed.

With a modern Hitachi ID identity solution, UCSF simplified and improved data protection and access while reducing security risk. Improved control has better positioned UCSF to provide access for its members today and ever growing population into the future.

Hitachi ID is the only industry leader delivering password, identity, group and privileged access management across a single platform to ease implementation as your IAM and PAM roadmaps evolve. You can learn more about the IAM challenges UCSF faced and the solutions Hitachi ID implemented to overcome them here: UCSF IAM Case Study

Why Higher Education IAM Automation Shouldn’t Forget UX

  January 7th, 2021
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We recently asked IT leaders in higher education to share their thoughts on identity and access management (IAM) automation via a survey conducted with Pulse. The questions touched on their goals, progress so far, anticipated benefits, and more. For many of these questions, the results matched the trends we’re witnessing in IAM for higher education. However, a few categories had some surprises, among them, end user experience (UX).

While only 13% of higher education IT executives cited the improvement of end user
experience as a main benefit of IAM automation, two-thirds rated the influence of UX over the IAM roadmap as at least a 4 (on a scale of 1-5). End user experience isn’t driving IAM automation, but it still has plenty of pull when it comes to automation. Understanding its influence can help higher education better incorporate UX into automation plans moving forward.

Reputation Is Everything

Most end users may not be a decision maker at any colleges and universities, but they’re still certainly stakeholders when it comes to identity and access management. Whether it’s a student needing to reset their password from home or a new research project that requires specific entitlements, the process needs to be seamless, simple, and secure.

Clunky processes can create frustration for the end user (at best) and serious system vulnerabilities (at worst). It’s also worth noting that ultimately, when it comes to IAM processes, the opinions of end users can and do influence those who make the decisions.

Amplified by Remote Access

While remote access has always played a role in UX, the pandemic has made it a priority. Our survey reflected that 98% of those surveyed said UX improvement has risen in importance following the mass work-from-home migration and the broad swath of resources being accessed remotely. Remote access has also added another dimension to UX with IT teams needing to account for how remote students and faculty can reach support (for password problems or more serious issues) when the need arises.

Lighten the Load

While the end user is the focus of UX, higher education IT teams will also reap some of the benefits. Seamless, simple, secure IAM that’s easy to use and incorporates support solutions that users can access remotely, will ultimately remove many of those tasks (password resets, permission updates, etc.) from the IT team’s to-do list. Fewer user issues means less problem solving for your IT team, freeing them to focus on more strategic initiatives — further improving processes, application development, or whatever innovation is next.

User Experience Smart From the Start

UX may not be the driving force for higher education IAM automation, but IT leaders still need to keep its impact and influence in mind when plotting out their identity and access management roadmaps. When higher education IT leaders incorporate UX into IAM automation strategies from the start, they can stay ahead of any complications and ensure IAM automation benefits all stakeholders. Learn more about the many benefits of identity and access management automation in our free resource: Higher Education IT Leaders Are Looking to Complement Access Governance With Automation.

The Future of IAM and PAM: Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric

  January 4th, 2021
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In the age of digital transformation, protecting against threats is increasingly complex but also crucial as organizations face a constantly evolving cyberattack landscape.

This swiftly shifting environment has left many organizations with a collection of insufficient options when it comes to their identity and access (IAM) and privileged access (PAM) management solutions. Some must prioritize one essential service over another. Others have to patch together multiple services and platforms to cover their needs. Then there are those who have to settle for an incomplete system due to legacy assets.

What’s the solution?

Organizations need flexibility and reliability to power these critical systems with technological and architectural building blocks that protect, manage, and govern the entire IAM and PAM infrastructure.

Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric delivers on all of the above with a singular, powerful framework and platform that brings together all the layers of IAM and PAM solutions organizations need to manage and protect their most critical and sensitive identity data.

Hitachi ID has always strived to help businesses achieve access management success, and our latest solution and architecture, the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric, continues that tradition.

The Right Platform and Framework

First and foremost, the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric offers all of the IAM and PAM solutions organizations need in one place. The Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric brings together mature automation and detection, governance and compliance, analytics and reporting.

Plus, as a single open architecture platform and the industry’s largest organically grown connector portfolio, it offers a robust API platform to complete your security strategy. That means no more patching together solutions and potentially creating system vulnerabilities in the process. IT leaders can also simplify vendor selection and program deployment, streamline SLAs, and lower the overall cost.

Right-Sized for Your Business Needs

Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric isn’t solely a single solution for your IAM and PAM needs — it’s actually five. The security fabric architecture includes: Identity, Privilege, Pass, Group, and our threat detection layer Discover. This collection of services allows companies to weave patterns of functionality to protect against continual threats and ensure your identity and access security program is covered.

Every organization may not yet need this robust of a solution. That’s why the Bravura Security Fabric is built to be easily scaled up or down based on business needs. As new threats are uncovered or your roadmap evolves, turn services on or off as needed without the need to install other products.

Equipped to Combat Complex Cyberattacks Head On

What’s the best weapon organizations can deploy against increasingly sophisticated attacks? Automation. The Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric automation-first approach gives IT teams agility to accurately configure your identity and access solution and provide continual protection.

Hitachi ID Bravura secures your systems faster and more effectively than access certification and individual products. That’s just the start. Our threat and detection response layer, Hitachi ID Bravura Discover, gets ahead of the game by revealing changing risks before they happen and identifying threats below the surface — allowing your team time to resolve them before they become a larger issue.

The Right Roadmap for Your Industry

With more than two decades of experience and deployments around the world, Hitachi ID has honed in on how to deliver faster time to value across industries. We used these best practices to develop the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric and the supporting Patterns customized for industries and products. These templatized solutions reduce time, cost and risk for IAM deployments from months to days.

The Power of One

By creating one, single source of truth for IAM and PAM solutions, the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric empowers organizations to better navigate the increasingly difficult terrain of cybersecurity. You can learn more about Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric and the future of IAM and PAM through our on demand sessions from our first Digital Identity & Access Virtual Summit.

Combat Ransomware With Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric

  December 17th, 2020
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In the age of digital transformation, protecting employees and users against cyberattacks and ransomware threats is increasingly difficult but also more crucial than ever. Organizations face a constantly evolving and costly cyberattack landscape. In 2019, they spent an estimated $11.5 billion on ransomware attack recovery and this year, IBM projects data breaches will cost affected businesses around the world an average of $3.86 million each. Furthermore, the latest forecasts for global ransomware damage costs are expected to reach $20 billion by 2021.

It’s apparent the world of security is getting increasingly more costly and complex. When we used to think about organizational security, we were only concerned with our employees — whether they be in finance, operations, engineering, or supply chain. Today, when we evaluate security, we must also factor our customers and partners into the equation. We are seeing an explosion of identities across the security landscape and many organizations have adapted by weaving a complex web of identities and relationships into their network infrastructures. However, this complicated structure is still vulnerable to risk and attack.

As usage grows in complexity, businesses have traditionally tried to secure their systems through siloed individual technologies from different companies that have disparate architectures, different connectors, and multiple administrative screens. But when put to the test, these siloed solutions are not protecting organizational networks and leading to billions in damages not to mention irrevocable brand damage.

Interwoven legacy and disparate solutions aren’t the answer. Instead, many organizations are opting to weave in patterns of functionality with one solution — the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric — to protect against continual and evolving threats.

The beauty of the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric is that it’s a singular platform for identity, privilege access, and password and group management. It offers mature automation and detection, governance and compliance, and analytics and reporting capabilities all in one solution. Through the platform, organizations can simplify vendor selection and program deployment and streamline service level agreements and lower overall cost.

With a singular security platform, people, edge devices, network, system preferences, and data are all all under one umbrella. All layers are interconnected so changes you make to one layer or vertical will reverberate across the entirety of your organization’s systems and infrastructures. This ability makes implementing updates and security more efficient and cost effective. Moreover, these deployments can be fine-tuned to fit your customized needs whether that be SaaS, on-premise implementation, private cloud, or mix ‘n’ match hybrids.

Additionally, as an organization uncovers new threats or as its roadmap evolves, it allows you to turn services on or off as needed without installing other products. This potential offers turn-key customization and quick as-needed changes that a patchwork of distinct solutions simply cannot provide. Furthermore, it combats automated attacks with security automation to win against hackers and provide continual protection to secure your systems faster and more effectively than access certification and individual products.

With a singular security fabric, you can achieve some quick wins in increasing cybersecurity. Start with simple password management. Vault your shared credentials. Review all the current entitlements. Doing those undemanding things well will provide you with an immediate return on investment. Then over time, grow into more comprehensive, mature, and automated approaches. Often small changes have outsized gains when dealing with adversaries. But the critical thing here is to look at your threats comprehensively and tackle your most serious threats in priority order instead of which products you may have purchased:

  • Password policies and periodic changes with Hitachi ID Bravura Pass
  • Vaulting and managing administrative credentials with Hitachi ID Bravura Privilege
  • Reducing peoples unnecessary access through your organization with Hitachi ID Bravura Identity

Watch the webinar from our Power of One Summit to learn more about how the Hitachi ID Bravura Security Fabric can singularly transform your digital identity and access security culture.

Top Hurdles Holding Back Higher Education IAM Automation

  December 14th, 2020
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In our recent survey (conducted with Pulse) the latest trends in higher education identity access management (IAM) automation were confirmed: Nearly all IT leaders surveyed said they plan to automate (at least in part). That’s great news, since the unique IAM needs and challenges faced by colleges and universities make them a prime candidate for automation.

Unfortunately, due to obstacles faced by much of higher education, that automation panacea is still a ways off. The following hurdles are holding back critical growth for identity and access management in higher education and overcoming them will be crucial for success in the future.

Budget Constraints

Pre-pandemic, higher education was already facing budget cuts. Now, Covid-19 has only further intensified financial constraints. IT departments at colleges and universities, in particular, have been faced with unforeseen challenges as they were forced to quickly adapt for remote learning and then strengthen these swift solutions as the pandemic stretched on. Of course, this increase in internal IT demand had its own financial outlays and was simultaneously coupled with schools needing to tighten their budgets even further.

In our survey, all IT leaders agreed that budget is a primary roadblock for identity and access management automation. While there’s no easy solution for these financial hurdles, clearly communicating the full value of IAM automation (long-term cost savings, more efficient processes, fewer errors, etc.) will strengthen efforts to implement these essential processes and solutions.

Existing Infrastructure Investments

Legacy systems make those budget constraints even more challenging to overcome, as many schools have put significant amounts of time and financial investment into these systems and processes. Making the switch to a new automated system is about more than the financial cost, it’s also the time needed to onboard and implement that new technology — especially training teams and getting them up to speed with the new IAM solution.

All IT leaders we surveyed selected this as an impediment on the road to automation. Understanding that the investment — both time and cost — is worth the increase in efficiency, security, and so much more will allow colleges and universities to expedite their automation journey.

Executive Buy-in

Ultimately, automating identity and access management in higher education requires that IT leaders achieve buy-in from all decisions makers. While those in the trenches of the IT department may have a clear understanding of the benefits of automation, communicating that with the C-suite can present its own challenges.

While three-quarters of respondents identified executive buy-in as an automation hindrance, for schools struggling to convince decision makers of the value, it can be the sole roadblock to automation. As is the case with budget constraints, presenting the ROI of automation (time saved, decrease in human error, and as a result, reduced long-term costs) will be key in convincing leadership to commit to this essential evolution.

All of these challenges certainly present stumbling blocks on the path to IAM automation for colleges and universities. Clear communication of the return on this investment will be critical as higher education IAM moves forward. See the full results of our survey and learn more about IAM automation challenges and benefits for higher education in our free resource: Higher Education IT Leaders Are Looking to Complement Access Governance With Automation.