Identity Access Management: How It Works

by | Aug 4, 2020 | Security | 0 comments

Firewalls and antivirus solutions are essential to protecting your network, but they leave out another factor that could compromise your security—your employees. Employee passwords can be unknowingly compromised, allowing a bad actor to access your organization’s resources. Here’s how identity access management (IAM) works and some initial steps you can take to protect your organization.

What Is Identity Access Management (And Why It Matters)

IAM is a framework of business practices via tools that are designed to control user access to business-critical information. It typically includes:

  • How users are identified
  • How roles are identified and assigned to individuals
  • How users are added, removed, and updated in a system
  • How access is assigned to individuals and groups

IAM can manage the identity of devices and applications as well as individuals and groups. When deployed correctly, IAM solutions can simplify identity management. This makes it easier to stay compliant and enhances your network security.

First 5 Steps to Take for Microsoft 365 Identity Access Management

Is your IAM solution up to date? Let’s look at the initial steps you should take with one of your most important applications: Microsoft 365.

  1. Separate admin IDs. Microsoft offers a range of admin roles. Best practice is to assign admins with the least permissive role that allows them to complete their responsibilities. Logs of admin activity should also be reviewed on a regular basis.
  2. Multi-factor authentication (MFA). MFA is an essential IAM tool. You can enable MFA at the admin level or for all users. Ideally, rather than using SMS, users would use authenticator application or biometrics to confirm their identity, and logs should be regularly reviewed.
  3. Groups. Groups are a powerful collaborative tool in Microsoft 365. They should be kept to a small, manageable number of members, and group creation can be restricted to specific people, teams, and services. Group activities should be regularly audited.
  4. Login monitoring. Login monitoring should be conducted on a regular schedule. A better solution, though, is AI-enabled login monitoring, which can prevent unusual logins or alert you if more investigation is needed.
  5. Disabling legacy protocols. Disabling legacy protocols is essential to preventing cyberattacks and ensuring tools like MFA are effective.

Next Steps

Have you taken these initial steps with IAM? Are you ready for next steps? Either way, we’re here to help. As Microsoft Gold Partner with almost four decades of experience, we can help you develop a plan to enhance security without compromising user experience.

Ready to learn more? Contact Peters & Associates today.

Contact Peters & Associates