Every technological system controls its security by assigning different levels of access to different individuals. This Role-Based Security approach gives system administrators more control over the system and specifies what actions each user is allowed to take. According to the principle of least privilege, each user needs to only have the access they require to execute their tasks. As a result, in order to improve the platform’s security, an organization must limit the number of users who have administrative privileges.
These privileged accounts are commonly referred to as super users or administrators. Privy accounts, on the other hand, can relate to non-human system users. For example, to access confidential data or restricted networks, some enterprise services require a system account. You can also have services that depend on shared secrets, such as encryption keys, to provide access to regular users. We require taking additional security measures to secure these privileged accounts as they have access to secret data and secure settings.
What is PAM?
PAM or Privileged Access Management is a form of information security (InfoSec) system that secures identities with a specific kind of access or capabilities. PAM is a set of people, processes, tools, and technology that is used to secure, regulate, and monitor access to a company’s vital data and resources.
How Does Privileged Access Management Work?
Privileged Access Management, as previously said, is a set of individuals, processes, and technology. As a result, determining which accounts have privileged access is the first step in installing a PAM solution. After that, the company must require to decide which policies they will implement for these accounts.
They may specify, for example, that service accounts must reset their passwords every time a user accesses the credentials they’ve saved. Imposing Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) for all system administrators is another example. Another practice that the organization may opt to apply is keeping a complete log of all privileged sessions. Each process should, ideally, be linked to a specific risk. For example, forcing service account passwords to change reduces the danger of an insider attack. Similarly, keeping a log of all privileged sessions allows security admins to see any irregularities, and imposing MFA is a tried-and-true method of preventing password-related attacks. After the discovery step of identifying privileged accounts and the finalization of PAM policies, the company can install a technological platform to track and enforce its Privileged Access Management. This PAM solution organizes an organization’s rules and provides a platform for security administrators to handle and monitor privileged accounts.
Privileged Access Management Requirements
A Privileged Access Management system must be capable of supporting an organization’s PAM policies. Typical automated password management capabilities in a corporate PAM include a vault, auto-generation, auto-rotation, and an approval workflow. It should also give administrators the capability to deploy and enforce Multi-Factor Authentication in addition to these password management features. Organizations should be able to manage privileged account lifecycles with an enterprise-grade Privileged Access Management Solution. To put it another way, administrators must be able to automate the creation, modification, and deletion of accounts. Lastly, a PAM solution must include comprehensive monitoring and reporting capabilities. Security administrators require real-time visibility and automated alerts to monitor privileged sessions and analyze any irregularities.
Why is PAM Important?
Privileged Access Management is crucial in every organization since privileged accounts are a major security risk to the enterprise. If a threat actor, for example, gains access to a regular user account, they will only have access to that person’s information. If they can compromise a privileged user, though, they will have significantly more access and, depending on the account, the capacity to damage systems as well. Cybercriminals target privileged accounts because they can attack entire organizations rather than a single user because of their status and profile. With Forrester predicting that privileged accounts are involved in 80% of security breaches, safeguarding and monitoring these core business identities is essential. A PAM solution, for example, can address security flaws like many users accessing and learning the same administrative password for a given service. It also reduces the danger of administrators not wanting to change long-standing static passwords for fear of causing an unexpected disruption.