Understanding The Importance Of Privileged Access Management
When discussing access, passwords are most likely the first thing most individuals think of. Although passwords are a significant part of managing access, there are other aspects to consider too. If you are in need of IT security services in Singapore that can help secure your data and fight off unauthorised system access, utilising the entire spectrum offered by Privileged Access Management (PAM) can help.
In a business environment, the term ‘privileged access’ is used to delegate special abilities or access above and beyond that of an ordinary user. Privileged access enables organisations to secure their applications and infrastructure, operate their business efficiently, and maintain the confidentiality of their critical infrastructures and sensitive data. Ultimately, using PAM allows businesses to manage their access and credentials properly so they do not fall victim to attacks.
Read on to learn more about PAM and why it is important to cybersecurity.
What is Privileged Access Management?
Privileged Access Management (PAM) is essentially a strategic approach to determining who has privileged access to a certain network – including apps and infrastructures – and then purposely controlling that access. Often, this involves utilising a single point of control for admins and a single point of sign-on for users. Although access usually refers to users, PAM also covers processes and apps. Each of these should access various areas of the network and other apps to carry out its function.
The term ‘PAM’ refers to both the process and the terms used for privileged access management. Investing in a PAM solution offered by a specialist in IT outsourcing in Singapore is the first step. The next step is to set up the PAM processes around the tool. Most of the time, organisations and businesses make use of the principle of least privilege. This provides only the bare minimum access necessary for business purposes for each user, app, and device.
By using the least privilege approach, access to privileged areas is limited, and risks are reduced. Numerous groups combine PAM with zero trust. This means requiring verification for each access request and having the assumption that every request is invalid. Since both approaches operate on similar principles, their strategies work well with each other.
The Benefits of PAM
- Enhanced visibility
With PAM, organisations can determine in real-time who has accessed each network, application, device, and server without needing high-maintenance or high-risk manual spreadsheets. By monitoring session times, accurate time sheets are sure to be provided by contractors and vendors.
With PAM, it will be easier to see who is trying to access unauthorised areas and even set up alerts to provide hints about a possible insider attack. By particularly utilising AI-based PAM tools, businesses can instantly receive alerts when users are not following their usual behaviour to spot potentially compromised credentials.
- Better compliance
A lot of industries, such as the finance and healthcare sectors, are required to maintain compliance with least privileged access in order not to violate statutory or industry regulations. By using PAM, businesses can lessen their risk in an audit and can more easily prove their compliance.
- Increased productivity
Most PAM tools use automation to conduct what have previously been manual tasks, such as password vaulting and password creation. This ultimately saves organisations plenty of time. Because the structured process and the tools minimise human error, IT teams in companies spend less time rectifying issues. Moreover, employees also spend less time administering their own passwords and access.
- Effective integration
A common problem with cybersecurity is accidentally creating silos that add new problems to the process. With PAM, companies can easily consolidate their tools and processes across the group. By choosing apps that integrate with one’s systems, an organisation can even utilise a single dashboard for management. This then enables them to make detailed reports from just a single tool.
- Lesser malware attacks
Cyber attackers usually launch malware attacks by obtaining access to privileged accounts like that of an admin. This enables the harmful code to be spread much more rapidly due to the wide access that the privileged account provides. By more securely managing and limiting access to only businesses through PAM tools, organisations can effectively prevent the damaging spread of a malware attack.
PAM Best Practices
The following solutions can provide an organisation with a framework to establish critical PAM controls that strengthen its security posture. Implementing a cybersecurity programme that maximises these steps can help organisations attain a better reduction of risks in less time, protect their brand's reputation, and fulfil their regulatory and security objectives with fewer internal resources.
- Fight off irreversible network takeover attacks: Organisations need to isolate all their privileged access to domain controllers and other Tier1 and Tier0 assets and require multi-factor authentication.
- Protect and control infrastructure accounts: Organisations should put all their well-known infrastructure accounts in a centrally controlled digital vault. They should also automatically and regularly rotate passwords after every use.
- Restrict lateral movement: Organisations should completely eliminate all endpoint users from the local admins’ group on IT Windows workstations in order to fight off credential theft.
- Secure credentials for third-party applications: Organisations must vault all privileged accounts that are being used by third-party applications and should remove hardcoded credentials for commercial off-the-rack applications.
- Defend DevOps secrets on-premise and in the cloud: Organisations should see to it that all their public cloud-privileged accounts and API keys are well-protected and secure. They should put all secrets and credentials used by CI/CD tools in a safe vault, enabling them to be retrieved instantly and automatically rotated and controlled.
Businesses and other organisations that take advantage of PAM tools and programmes as part of their larger cybersecurity strategy can experience several benefits, such as enhancing visibility, improving regulatory compliance, increasing productivity and situational awareness, mitigating security risks, and decreasing the overall cyberattack surface. With these advantages, there is no doubt that PAM is a crucial cybersecurity component that every organisation should maximise to boost their security posture.
If you are looking for a comprehensive and efficient cybersecurity solution with reliable PAM tools, look no further than at JK Tech! JK Tech is a leading provider of outsourced IT support services in Singapore, offering various first-class IT products and services. Should you choose to engage in our cybersecurity services, we have a team of certified technicians who can help you develop an extensive privileged access management plan that works. Contact us today to learn more about foolproof cybersecurity tips and to engage in our comprehensive services.