Strategically determining user access for key infrastructure, network and applications is privileged access management (PAM). Typically, privileged access management is associated with user access, however it is broadly applied to applications and other processes.
Organisations have the option of purchasing privileged access management tools or software solutions offering services on identity and access management covering authentication and authorisation.
Privileged access management is tactically applied through implementation of certain principles. The principle of least privilege is frequently adopted by enterprises. Each application, device or user is granted minimum required access.
Combining the least privilege principle with a zero-trust policy can enhance cyber security by requiring a compulsory verification of every access request. A zero-trust approach assumes each access request invalid in the first instance. After successful verification, the least access principle will grant minimum access to the user.
Privileged access management extends cyber security for an organisation and presents countless benefits including reduced malware attacks, increased data transparency, improved compliance, and productivity.
Real time data collection allows organisations to monitor who has accessed critical infrastructure from company networks, servers, and applications. Likewise, any unauthorised login attempts are also logged, various tools recommend setting up alerts for the detection of suspicious activity.
Historically privileged access management focused on password protection for privileged accounts. Over the years, privileged access management has evolved to include key security factors such as session monitoring, user behavioural analytics, multi-factor authentication, proxying and password vaulting.
As businesses invest in updating key infrastructure for digital transformation, the importance of implementing privileged access management will increase.13