Showing posts with label iam. Show all posts
Showing posts with label iam. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Five Ways to Make Identity Management Work Best Across Hybrid Computing Environments

Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast on the basic tenets of identity and access management in a rapidly changing and growing IT world.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: SailPoint Technologies.

Dana Gardner: Hi, this is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions and you're listening to BriefingsDirect. Today, we present a sponsored podcast discussion on learning new best practices for managing the rapidly changing needs around identity and access management (IAM).

Any modern business has been dealing with IAM from day one. But now, with more critical elements of business extending beyond the enterprise, access control complexity has been ramping up due to cloud, mobile, bring your own device (BYOD), and hybrid computing.  And greater complexity forms a major deterrent to secure, governed, and managed control over who and what can access your data and services -- and under what circumstances.

So while cloud gets a lot of attention, those of us working with enterprises daily know that the vast majority of businesses are, and will remain, IT hybrids, a changing mixture of software as a service (SaaS), cloud, mobile, managed hosting models, and of course, on-premises IT systems.

We're here with a Chief Technology Officer for a top IAM technology provider to gain a deeper understanding of the various ways to best deploy and control access management in this ongoing age of hybrid business.

Here to explore five critical tenets of best managing the rapidly changing needs around identity and access management is our guest, Darran Rolls, Chief Technology Officer at SailPoint Technologies in Austin, Texas. Welcome, Darran.

Darran Rolls: Thank you.

Gardner: Darran, changes in IT are forcing a rethinking of deployment models and in user behaviors. Therefore governance of these critical business processes needs to adjust. But let’s just focus on what does not change, despite this hybrid environment we now find ourselves in. There must be some basic, bedrock principles that we can look to that will guide us as we're trying to better manage access and identity.

Rolls: Absolutely, there are, and I think that will be a consistent topic of our conversation today. It's something that we like to think of as the core tenets of IAM. As you very eloquently pointed out in your introduction, this isn't anything new. We've been struggling with managing identity and security for some time. The changing IT environment is introducing new challenges, but the underlying principles of what we're trying to achieve have remained the same.
The idea of holistic management for identity is key. There's no question about that, and something that we'll come back to is this idea of the weakest link -- a very commonly understood security principle. As our environment expands with cloud, mobile, on-prem, and managed hosting, the idea of a weak point in any part of that environment is obviously a strategic flaw.

As we like to say at SailPoint, it’s an anywhere identify principle. That means all people -- employees, contractors, partners, customers, basically from any device, whether you’re on a desktop, cloud, or mobile to anywhere. That includes on-prem enterprise apps, SaaS apps, and mobile. It’s certainly our belief that for any IAM technology to be truly effective, it has to span all for all -- all access, all accounts, and all users; wherever they live in that hybrid runtime.

Gardner: So we're in an environment now where we have to maintain those bedrock principles for true enterprise-caliber governance, security, and control, but we have a lot more moving parts. And we have a cavalcade of additional things you need to support, which to me, almost begs for those weak links to crop up.

So how do you combine the two? How do you justify and reconcile these two realities -- secure and complex?

Addressing the challenge

Rolls: One way comes from how you address the problem and the challenge. Quite often, I'm asked if there's a compromise here. If I move my IAM to the cloud, will I still be able to sustain my controls and management and do risk mitigation, which is what we were trying to get to.

My advice is if you're looking at an identity-as-a-service (IDaaS) solution that doesn’t operate in terms of sustainable controls and risk mitigation, then stop, because controls and risk mitigation really are the core tenets of identity management. It’s really important to start a conversation around IDaaS by quite clearly understanding what identity governance really is.

This isn’t an occasional, office-use application. This is critical security infrastructure. We very much have to remember that identity sits at the center of that security-management lifecycle, and at the center of the users’ experience. So it’s super important that we get it right.

So in this respect, I like to think that IDaaS is more of a deployment option than any form of a compromise. There are a minimum set of table stakes that have to be in place. And, whether you're choosing to deploy an IDaaS solution or an on-prem offering, there should be no compromise in it.

We have to respect the principles of global visibility and control, of consistency, and of user experience. Those things remain true for cloud and on-prem, so the song remains the same, so to speak. The IT environment has changed, and the IAM solutions are changing, but the principles remain the same.

Gardner: I was speaking with some folks leading up to the recent Cloud Identity Summit, and more and more, people seem to be thinking that the IAM is the true extended enterprise management. It's more than just the identity in access, but across services and so essential for extended enterprise processes.
Being more inclusive means that you need to have the best of all worlds. You need to be able to be doing well on-premises as well as in the cloud, and not either/or.

Also, to your point, being more inclusive means that you need to have the best of all worlds. You need to be able to be doing IAM well on-premises, as well as in the cloud -- and not either/or.

Rolls: Most of the organizations that I speak to these days are trying to manage a balance between being enterprise-ready -- so supporting controls and automation and access management for all applications, while being very forward looking, so also deploying that solution from the cloud for cost and agility reasons. 

For these organizations, choosing an IDaaS solution is not a compromise in risk mitigation, it’s a conscious direction toward a more off-the-shelf approach to managing identity. Look, everyone has to address security and user access controls, and making a choice to do that as a service can’t compromise your position on controls and risk mitigation.

Gardner: I suppose the risk of going hybrid is that if you have somewhat of a distributed approach to your IAM capabilities, you'll lose that all-important single view of management. I'd like to hear more, as we get into these tenets, of how you can maintain that common control.

You have put in some serious thought into making a logical set of five tenets that help people understand and deal with these changeable markets. So let’s start going through those. Tell me about the first tenet, and then we can dive in and maybe even hear an example of where someone has done this right.

Focusing on identity

Rolls: Obviously it would be easy to draw 10 or 20, but we like to try and compress it. So there's probably always the potential for more. I wouldn’t necessarily say these are in any specific order, but the first one is the idea of focusing on the identity and not the account.

This one is pretty simple. Identities are people, not accounts in an on-line system. And something we learned early in the evolution of IAM was that in order to gain control, you have to understand the relationships between people -- identities, and their accounts, and between those accounts and the entitlements and data they give access, too.

So this tenet really sits at the heart of the IAM value proposition -- it's all about understanding who has access to what, and what it really means to have that access. By focusing on the identity -- and capturing all of the relationships it has to accounts, to systems, and to data -- that helps map out the user security landscape and get a complete picture of how things are configured.

Gardner: If I understand this correctly, all of us now have multiple accounts. Some of them overlap. Some of them are private. Some of them are more business-centric. As we get into the Internet of Things, we're going to have another end-point tier associated with a user, or an identity, and that might be sensors or machines. So it’s important to maintain the identity focus, rather than the account focus. Did I get that right?

Rolls: We see this today in classic on-prem infrastructure with system-shared and -privileged accounts. They are accounts that are operated by the system and not necessarily by an individual. What we advocate here, and what leads into the second tenet as well, is this idea of visibility. You have to have ownership and responsibility. You assign and align the system and functional accounts with people that can have responsibility.
The consequences of not understanding and accurately managing those identity and account relationships can be pretty significant.

In the Internet of Things, I would by no means say that it's nothing new, because if nothing else, it's potentially a new order of scale. But it's functionally the same thing: Understanding the relationships.

For example, I want to tie my Nest account back to myself or to some other individual, and I want to understand what it means to have that ownership. It really is just more of the same, and those principles that we have learned in enterprise IAM are going to play out big time when everything has an identity in the Internet of Things.

Gardner: Any quick examples of tenet one, where we can identify that we're having that focus on the user, rather than the account, and it has benefited them?

Rolls: For sure. The consequences of not understanding and accurately managing those identity and account relationships can be pretty significant. Unused and untracked accounts, something that we commonly refer to in the industry as "orphan accounts," often lead to security breaches. That’s why, if you look at the average identity audit practice, it’s very focused on controls for those orphan accounts.

We also know for a fact, based on network forensic analysis that happens post-breach, that in many of the high-profile, large-scale security breaches that we've seen over the last two to five years, the back door is left open by an account that nobody owns or manages. It’s just there. And if you go over to the dark side and look at how the bad guys construct vulnerabilities, first things they look for are these unmanaged accounts.

So it’s low-hanging fruit for IAM to better manage these accounts because the consequences can be fairly significant.

Tenet two

Gardner: Okay, tenet two. What’s next on your priority list?

Rolls: The next is two-fold. Visibility is king, and silos are bad. This is really two thoughts that are closely related.

The first part is the idea that visibility is king, and this comes from the realization that you have to be able to capture, model, and visualize identity data before you have any chance of managing it. It’s like the old saying that you can’t manage what you can’t measure.

It’s same thing for identity. You can’t manage the access and security you don’t see, and what you don’t see is often what bites you. So this tenet is the idea that your IAM system absolutely must support this idea of rapid, read-only aggregation of account and entitlement information as a first step, so you can understanding the landscape.

The second part is around the idea that silos of identity management can be really, really bad. A silo here is a standalone IAM application or what one might think of as a domain-specific IAM solution. These are things like an IDaaS offering that only does cloud apps or an Active Directory-only management solution, basically any IAM tool that creates a silo of process and data. This isolation goes against the idea of visibility and control that we just covered in the first tenant.
In education, we say "no child left behind." In identity, we say “no account left behind, and no system left behind.”

You can’t see the data if its hidden in a siloed system. It’s isolated and doesn't give you the global view you need to manage all identity for all users. As a vendor, we see some real-world examples of this. SailPoint just replaced a legacy-provisioning solution at a large US based bank, for example, because the old system was only touching 12 of their core systems.

The legacy IAM system the bank had was a silo managing just the Unix farm. It wasn't integrated and its data and use case wasn’t shared. The customer needed a single place for their users to go to get access, and a single point of password control for their on-prem Unix farm, and for their cloud-based, front-end application. So today SailPoint’s IdentityNow provides that single view for them, and things are working much better.

Gardner: It also reminds me that we need to be conscious of supporting the legacy in the older systems, recognizing that they weren't designed necessarily for the reality we're in now. We also need to be flexible in the sense of being future-proof. So it's having visibility across your models that are shifting in terms of hybrid and cloud, but also visibility across the other application sets and platforms that were never created with this mixture of models that we are now supporting.

Rolls: Exactly right. In education, we say "no child left behind." In identity, we say “no account left behind, and no system left behind.” We also shouldn’t forget there is a cost associated with maintaining those siloed IAM tools, too. If the system only supports cloud, or only supports on-prem, or managing identity for mobile, SaaS, or just one area of the enterprise -- there’s cost. There's a real dollar cost for buying and maintaining the software, and probably more importantly, a soft cost in the end-user experience for the people that have to manage across those silos. So these IAM silos are not only preventing visibility and controls, but there is big cost here, a real dollar cost to the business, as well.

Gardner: This gets closer to the idea of a common comprehensive view of all the data and all the different elements of what we are trying to manage. I think that's also important.

Okay, number three. What are we looking at for your next tenet, and what are the ways that we can prevent any of that downside from it?

Complete lifecycle

Rolls: This tenet comes from the school of identity hard knocks, and is something I’ve learned from being in the IAM space for the past 20 or so years -- you have to manage the complete lifecycle for both the identity, and every account that the identity has access to.

Our job in identity management, our “place” if you will in the security ecosystem, is to provide cradle-to-grave management for corporate account assets. It's our job to manage and govern the full lifecycle of the identity -- a lifecycle that you’ll often hear referred to as JML, meaning Joiners, Movers and Leavers.

As you might expect, when gaps appear in that JML lifecycle, really bad things start to happen. Users don’t get the system access they need to get their jobs done, the wrong people get access to the wrong data and critical things get left behind when people leave.

Maybe the wrong people get access to the wrong data. They're in the Move phase. Then things get left behind when people leave. You have to track the account through that JML lifecycle. I avoid using the term "cradle to grave," but that’s really what it means.

That’s a very big issue for most companies that we talked to. It’s captured in that lifecycle.
In general, worker populations are becoming more transient and work groups more dynamic.

Gardner: So it’s not just orphan accounts, but it’s inaccurate or outdated accounts that don’t have the right and up-to-date information. Those can become back doors. Those can become weak links.

It appears to me, Darran, that there's another element here in how our workplace is changing. We're seeing more and more of what they call "contingent workforces," where people will come in as contractors or third-party suppliers for a brief period of time, do a job, and get out.

It’s this lean, agile approach to business. This also requires a greater degree of granularity and fine control. Do you have any thoughts about how this new dynamic workforce is impacting this particular tenet?

Rolls: It’s certainly increasing the pressure on IT to understand and manage all of its population of users, whether they're short-term contractors or long-term employees. If they have access to an asset that the business owns, it’s the business's fiduciary duty to manage the lifecycle for that worker.

In general, worker populations are becoming more transient and work groups more dynamic. Even if it’s not a new person joining the organization, we’re creating and using more dynamic groups of people that need more dynamic systems access.

It’s becoming increasingly important for businesses today to be able to put together the access that people need quickly when a new project starts and then accurately take it away when the project finishes. And if we manage that dynamic access without a high degree of assured governance, the wrong people get to the wrong stuff, and valued things get left behind.

Old account

Quite often, people ask me if it would really matter when the odd account gets left behind, and my answer usually is: It certainly can. A textbook example of this when a sales guy leaves his old company, goes to join a competitor, and no one takes away his account. He's then spends the next six months dipping into his old company’s contacts and leads because he still has access to the application in the cloud.

This kind of stuff happens all the time. In fact, we recently replaced another IDaaS provider at a client on the West Coast, specifically because “the other vendor” -- who shall remain nameless -- only did just-in-time SAML provisioning, with no leaver-based de-provisioning. So customers really do understand this stuff and recognize the value. You have to support the full lifecycle for identity or bad things happen for the customer and the vendor.

Gardner: All right. We were working our way through our tenets. We're now on number four. Is there a logical segue between three and four? How does four fit in?

Rolls: Number four, for me, is all about consistency. It talks to the fact that we have to think of identity management in terms of consistency for all users, as we just said, from all devices and accessing all of our applications.

Practically speaking, this means that whether you sit with your Windows desktop in the office, or you are working from an Android tablet back at the house, or maybe on your smartphone in a Starbucks drive-through, you can always access the applications that you need. And you can consistently and securely do something like a password reset, or maybe complete a quarterly user access certification task, before hitting the road back to the office.
It’s very easy to think of consistency as just being in the IAM UI or just in the device display, but it really extends to the identity API as well.

Consistency here means that you get the same basic user experience, and I use the term user experience here very deliberately, and the same level of identity service, wherever you are. It has become very, very important, particularly as we have introduced a variety of incoming devices, that we keep our IAM services consistent.

Gardner: It strikes me that this consistency has to be implemented and enforced from the back-end infrastructure, rather than the device, because the devices are so changeable. We're even thinking about a whole new generation of devices soon, and perhaps even more biometrics, where the device becomes an entry point to services.

Tell me a bit about the means by which consistency can take place. This isn't something you build into the device necessarily.

Rolls: Yes, that consistency has to be implemented in the underlying service, as you’ve highlighted. It’s very easy to think of consistency as just being in the IAM UI or just in the device display, but it really extends to the identity API as well. A very good example to explore this concept of consistency of the API, is to think like a corporate application developer and consider how they look at consistency for IAM, too.

Assume our corporate application developer is developing an app that needs to carry out a password reset, or maybe it needs to do something with an identity profile. Does that developer write a provisioning connector themselves? Or should they implement a password reset in their own custom code?

The answer is, no, they don’t roll their own. Instead they should make use of the consistent API-level services that the IAM platform provides -- they make calls to the IDaaS service. The IDaaS service is then responsible for doing the actual password reset using consistent policies, consistent controls, and a consistent level of business service. So, as I say, its about consistency for all use cases, from all devices, accessing all applications.

Thinking about consistency

Gardner: And even as we think about the back-end services support, that itself also needs to extend to on-prem legacy, and also to cloud and SaaS. So we're really thinking about consistency deep and wide.

Rolls: Precisely, and if we don’t think about consistency for identity as a services, we're never going to have control. And importantly, we're never going to reduce the cost of managing all this stuff, and we're never going to lower the true risk profile for the business.

Gardner: We're coming up or our last tenet, number five. We haven't talked too much about the behavior, the buy-in. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. This, of course, has an impact on how we enforce consistency across all these devices, as well as the service model. So what do we need to do to get user buy-in? How does number five affect that?

Rolls: Number five, for me, is the idea that the end-user experience for identity is everything. Once upon a time, the only user for identity management was IT itself and identity was an IT tool for IT practitioners. It was mainly used by the help desk and by IT pros to automate identity and access controls. Fortunately, things have changes a lot since then, both in the identity infrastructure and, very importantly, in the end users’ expectations.
The expectation is to move the business user to self service for pretty much everything, and that very much includes Identity Management as a Service as well.

Today, IAM really sits front and center for the business users IT experience. When we think of something like single sign-on (SSO), it literally is the front door to the applications and the services that the business is running. When a line-of-business person sits down at an application, they're just expecting seamless access via secured single sing-on. The expectation is that they can just quickly and easily get access to the things they need to get their job done.

They also expect identity-management services, like password management, access request, and provisioning to be integrated, intuitive, and easy to use. So the way these identity services are delivered in the user experience is very important.

Pretty much everything is self-service these days. The expectation is to move the business user to self-service for pretty much everything, and that very much includes Identity Management as a Service (IDaaS) as well. So the UI just has to be done right and the overall users’ experience has to be consistent, seamless, intuitive, and just easy to deal with. That’s how we get buy-in for identity today, by making the identity management services themselves easy to use, intuitive, and accessible to all.

Gardner: And isn’t this the same as saying making the governance infrastructure invisible to the end user? In order to do that, you need to extend across all the devices, all the deployment models, and the APIs, as well as the legacy systems. Do you agree that we're talking about making it invisible, but we can’t do that unless you're following the previous four tenets?

Rolls: Exactly. There's been a lot of industry conversation around this idea of identity being part of the application and the users’ flow, and that’s very true. Some large enterprises do have their own user-access portals, specific places that you go to carry out identity-related activities, so we need integration there. On the other hand, if I'm sitting here talking to you and I want to reset my Active Directory password, I just want to pick up my iPhone and do it right there, and that means secure identity API’s.

We talked a good amount about the business user experience. It is very important to realize that it’s not just about the end-user and the UI. It also affects how the IDaaS service itself is configured, deployed, and managed over time. This means the user experience for the system owner, be that someone in IT or in the line of business -- it doesn’t really matter who -- has to be consistent and easy to use and has to lead to easier configuration, faster deployment, and faster time-to-value. We do that by making sure that the administration interface and the API’s that support it are consistent and generally well thought out, too.

Intersect between tenets

Gardner: I can tell, Darran, that you've put an awful lot of thought into these tenets. You've created them with some order, even though they're equally important. This must be also part of how you set about your requirements for your own products at SailPoint.

Tell me about the intersect between these tenets, the marketplace, and what SailPoint is bringing in order to ameliorate the issues that the problem side of these tenets identify, but also the solution side, in terms of how to do things well.

Rolls: You would expect every business to say these words, but they have great meaning for us. We're very, very customer focused at SailPoint. We're very engaged with our customers and our prospects. We're continually listening to the market and to what the buying customer wants. That’s the outside-in part of the of the product requirements story, basically building solutions to real customer problems.

Internally, we have a long history in identity management at SailPoint. That shows itself in how we construct the products and how we think about the architecture and the integration between pieces of the product. That’s the inside-out part of the product requirements process, building innovative products that solutions that work well over time.
As SailPoint has strategically moved into the IDaaS space, we’ve brought with us a level of trust, a breadth of experience, and a depth of IAM knowledge.

So I guess that all really comes down to good internal product management practices. Our product team has worked together for a considerable time across several companies. So that’s to be expected. It's fair to say that SailPoint is considered by many in the industry as the thought leader on identity governance and administration. We now work with some of the largest and most trusted brand names in the world, helping them provide the right IAM infrastructure. So I think we’re getting it right.

As SailPoint has strategically moved into the IDaaS space, we’ve brought with us a level of trust, a breadth of experience, and a depth of IAM knowledge that shows itself in how we use and apply these tenets of identity in the products and the solutions that we put together for our customers.

Gardner: Now, we talked about the importance of being legacy-sensitive, focusing on what the enterprise is and has been and not just what it might be, but I'd like to think a little bit about the future-proofing aspects of what we have been discussing.

Things are still changing and, as we said, there are new generations of mobile devices, more biometrics perhaps doing away with passwords and identifying ourselves through the device that then needs to filter back throughout the entire lifecycle of IAM implications and end points.

So when you do this well, if you follow the five tenets, if you think about them and employ the right infrastructure to support governance in IAM for both the old and the new, how does that set you up to take advantage of some of the newer things? Maybe it’s big data, maybe it’s hybrid cloud, or maybe it's agile business.

It seems to me that there's a virtuous adoption benefit that when you do IAM well.

Changes in technologies

Rolls: As you've highlighted, there are lots of new technologies out there that are effecting change in corporate infrastructure. In itself, that change isn’t new. I came into IT with the advent of distributed systems. We were going to replace every mainframe. Mainframes were supposed to be dead, and it's kind of interesting that they're still here.

So infrastructure change is most definitely accelerating, and the options available for the average IT business these days -- cloud, SaaS and on-prem -- are all blending together. That said, when you look below the applications, and look at the identity infrastructure, many things remain the same. Consider a SaaS app like Yes, it’s a 100 percent SaaS cloud application, but it still has an account for every user.

I can provide you with SSO to your account using SAML, but your account still has fine-grained entitlements that need to be provisioned and governed. That hasn’t changed. All of the new generation of cloud and SaaS applications require IAM. Identity is at the center of the application and it has to be managed. If you adopt a mature and holistic approach to that management you are in good stead.
If you're not on board, you'd better get on board, because the challenges for identity are certainly not going away.

Another great example are the mobile device management (MDM) platforms out there -- a new piece of management infrastructure that has come about to manage mobile endpoints. The MDM platforms themselves have identity control interfaces. Its our job in IAM to connect with these platforms and provide control over what’s happening to identity on the endpoint device, too.

Our job in identity is to manage identity lifecycles where ever they sit in the infrastructure. If you're not on board, you'd better get on board, because the challenges for identity are certainly not going away.

Interestingly, I'm sometimes challenged when I make a statement like that. I’ll often get the reply that "with SAML single sign-on, the the passwords go away so the account management problem goes away, right?” The answer is that no, they don’t. They're still accounts in the application infrastructure. So good best practice identity and access management will remain key as we keep moving forward.

Gardner: And of course as you pointed out earlier, we can expect the scale of what's going to be involved here to only get much greater.

Rolls: Yes, 100 percent. Scale is key to architectural thinking when you build a solution today, and we're really only just starting to touch where scale is going to go.

It’s very important to us at SailPoint, when we build our solutions, that the product we deliver understands the scale of business today and the scale that is to come. That affects how we design and integrate the solutions, it affects how they are configured and how they are deployed. It’s imperative to think scale -- that’s certainly something we do.

Gardner: Very good. I'm afraid we will have to leave it there. You've been listening to a sponsored BriefingsDirect podcast discussion on new best practices for managing the rapidly changing needs around identity and access management.

We’ve seen how greater complexity is the chief detriment to secured, governed, and responsive ID management. We've also seen how the tried-and-true principles of ID are still there and need to be maintained, even as we face greater scale and greater complexity across more devices, tiers, and across the extended enterprise landscape.

So I want to thank our guest, Darran Rolls, Chief Technology Officer at SailPoint Technologies in Austin, Texas. Thank you so much, Darran.

Rolls: Thank you, Dana, good speaking to you.

Gardner: This is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions. Thanks also to our audience for joining, and don’t forget to come back to the next BriefingsDirect IT discussion.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: SailPoint Technologies.

Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast on the basic tenets of identity and access management in a rapidly changing and growing IT world. Copyright Interarbor Solutions, LLC, 2005-2014. All rights reserved.

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Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Identity and Access Management as a Service Gets Boost with SailPoint's IdentityNow Cloud Service

Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast on the need for and innovation in improved identity and access management.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: SailPoint Technologies.

Dana Gardner: Hi, this is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions, and you’re listening to BriefingsDirect.

Today, we present a sponsored podcast discussion on the changing needs for, and heightened value around, improved identity and access management (IAM). We'll examine now how business trends are forcing organizations to safely allow access to all kinds of applications and myriad resources anytime, anywhere, and from any device.

According to research firm MarketsandMarkets, the demand for IAM is therefore estimated to grow from more than $5 billion this year to over $10 billion in 2018. What's driving the doubling of the market in five years? Well, as with much of the current IT space, it's about cloud, mobile, bring your own device (BYOD), consumerization of IT, and broader security concerns.

But the explosive growth also factors the move to more pervasive use of identity and access management as a service (IDaaS).

So join us now as we explore how new IDaaS offerings are helping companies far better protect and secure their informational assets. Here to share insights into this future of identity management is Paul Trulove, Vice President of Product Marketing at SailPoint Technologies in Austin, Texas. Welcome, Paul. [Disclosure: SailPoint is a sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]

Paul Trulove: Thanks, Dana. Glad to be here.

Gardner: The word "control" comes up so often when I talk to people about security and IT management issues, and companies seem to feel that they are losing control, especially with such trends as BYOD. How do companies regain that control, or do we need to think about this differently. Is it no longer an issue of control?

Trulove: The reality in today's market is that a certain level of control will always be required. But as we look at the rapid adoption of new corporate enterprise resources, things like cloud-based applications or mobile devices where you could access corporate information anywhere in the world at any time on any device, the reality is that we have to put a base level of controls in place that allow organizations to protect the most sensitive assets. But you have to also provide ready access to the data, so that the organizations can move at the pace of what the business is demanding today.

Gardner: The expectations of users has changed. When they can go sign up for a software-as-a-service (SaaS) application or access cloud services, they're used to having more of their own freedom. How is that something that we can balance, allow them to get the best of their opportunity and their productivity benefits, but at the same time, allow for the enterprise to be as low risk as possible?

Trulove: That's the area that the organization has to find the right balance for their particular business that meets the internal demands, the external regulatory requirements, and really meet the expectations of their customer base. While the productivity aspect can't be ignored, taking a blind approach to allowing an individual end-user to begin to migrate structured data out of something like an SAP or other enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, up to a personal account is something most organizations are just not going to allow.

Each organization has to step back, redefine the different types of policies that they're trying to put in place, and then put the right kind of controls that mitigate risk in terms of inappropriate acts, access to critical enterprise resources and data, but also allow the end user to have a little bit more control and little bit more freedom to do things that make them the most productive.

Uptake in SaaS

Gardner: We've seen a significant uptake in SaaS, certainly at the number of apps level, communications, and email, but it seems as if some of the infrastructure services around IAM are lagging. Is there a maturity issue here, or is it just a natural way that markets evolve? What's the case in understanding why the applications have gone fast, but we're now just embarking on IDaaS?

Trulove: We're seeing a common trend in IT if you look back over time, where a lot of the front-end business applications were the first to move to a new paradigm. Things like ERP and service resource management (SRM)-type applications have all migrated fairly quickly.

Over the last decade, we've really seen a lot of the sales management applications, like Salesforce and NetSuite come on as full force. Now, there are things like Workday and even some of the work force management becoming very popular. However, the infrastructure generally lagged for a variety of reasons.

In the IAM space, this is a critical aspect of enterprise security and risk management as it relates to guarding the critical assets of the organization. Security practitioners are going to look at new technology very thoroughly before they begin to move things like IAM out to a new delivery paradigm such as SaaS.

The other thing is that organizations right now are still fundamentally protecting internal applications. So there's less of a need to move your infrastructure out into the cloud until you begin to change the overall delivery paradigm for your internal application.
As customers implement more and more of their software out in the cloud, that's a good time for them to begin to explore IDaaS.

What we're seeing in the market, and definitely from a customer perspective, is that as customers implement more and more of their software out in the cloud, that's a good time for them to begin to explore IDaaS.

Look at some of the statistics being thrown around. In some cases, we've seen that 80 percent of new software purchases are being pushed to a SaaS model. Those kinds of companies are much more likely to embrace moving infrastructure to support that large cloud investment with fewer applications to be managed back in the data center.

Gardner: As you mentioned, SaaS has been around for 10 years, but the notion of mobile-first applications now has picked up in just the last two or three years. I have to imagine that's another accelerant to looking at IAM differently when you get the devices.

We've talked a little bit about SaaS and IDaaS, coming on as a follow up, how does the mobile side of things impact this?

Trulove: Mobile plays a huge part in organizations' looking at IDaaS, and the reason is that you’re moving the device that's interacting with the identity management service outside the bounds of the firewall and the network. So, having a point of presence in the cloud gives you a very easy way to generate all of the content out to the devices that are being operated outside of the traditional bounds of the IT organization, which was generally networked in to the PCs, laptops, etc that are on the network itself.

Moving to IDaaS

Gardner: I'd like to get into what hurdles organizations need to overcome to move in to IDaaS, but let's define this a little better for folks that might not be that familiar with it. How does SailPoint define IDaaS? What are we really talking about?

Trulove: SailPoint looks at IDaaS as a set of capabilities across compliance and governance, access request and provisioning, password management, single sign-on (SSO), and Web access management that allow for an organization to do fundamentally the same types of business processes and activities that they do with an internal IAM systems, but delivered from the cloud.

We also believe that it's critical, when you talk about IDaaS to not only talk about the cloud applications that are being managed by that service, but as importantly, the internal applications behind the firewall that still have to be part of that IAM program.

Gardner: So, this is not just green field. You have to work with what's already in place, and it has to work pretty much right the first time.

Trulove: Yes, it does. We really caution organizations against looking at cloud applications in a siloed manner from all the things that they're traditionally managing in the data center. Bringing up a secondary IAM system to only focus on your cloud apps, while leaving everything that is legacy in place, is a very dangerous situation. You lose visibility, transparency, and that global perspective that most organizations have struggled to get with the current IAM approaches across all of those areas that I talked about.
We see a little bit less of the data export concerns with companies here in the US, but it's a much bigger concern for companies in Europe and Asia in particular.

Gardner: So, we recognize that these large trends are forcing a change, users want their freedom, more mobile devices, more different services from different places, and security being as important if not more than ever. What is holding organizations back from moving towards IDaaS, given that it can help accommodate this very complex set of requirements?

Trulove: It can. The number one area, and it's really made up of several different things, is the data security, data privacy, and data export concerns. Obviously, the level at which each of those interplay with one another, in terms of creating concern within a particular organization, has a lot to do with where the company is physically located. So, we see a little bit less of the data export concerns with companies here in the US, but it's a much bigger concern for companies in Europe and Asia in particular.

Data security and privacy are the two that are very common and are probably at the top of every IT security professional’s list of reasons why they're not looking at IDaaS.

Gardner: It would seem that just three or four years ago, when we were talking about the advent of cloud services, quite a few people thought that cloud was less secure. But I’ve certainly been mindful of increased and improved security as a result of cloud, particularly when the cloud organization is much more comprehensive in how they view security.

They're able to implement patches with regularity. In fact, many of them have just better processes than individual enterprises ever could. So, is that the case here as well? Are we dealing with perceptions? Is there a case to be made for IDaaS being, in fact, a much better solution overall?

IAM as secure

Trulove: Much like organizations have come to recognize the other categories of SaaS as being secure, the same thing is happening within the context of IAM. Even a lot of the cloud storage services, like, are now signing up large organizations that have significant data security and privacy concerns. But, they're able to do that in a way and provide the service in a way where that assurance is in place that they have control over the environment.

And so, I think the same thing will happen with identity, and it's one of the areas where SailPoint is very focused on delivering capabilities and assurances to the customers that are looking at IDaaS, so that they feel comfortable putting the kinds of information and operating the different types of IAM components, so that they get over that fear of the unknown.

Gardner: Before we get into some of the details about how you’re approaching this, and what your services can provide, I'm curious about what companies can expect to get when they pursue the full cloud and services panoply of possibilities across apps, data, IT management, and other services. What are some of the business drivers? What do you get if you do this right and you make the leap to the services’ strata?

Trulove: One of the biggest benefits of moving from a traditional IAM approach to something that is delivered as IDaaS is the rapid time to value. It's also one of the biggest changes that the organization has to be prepared to make, much like they would have as they move from a Siebel- to a Salesforce-type model back in the day.

IAM delivered as a service needs to be much more about configuration, versus that customized solution where you attempt to map the product and technology directly back to existing business processes.
The benefit that they get out of that is a much lower total cost of ownership (TCO), especially around the deployment aspects of IDaaS.

One of the biggest changes from a business perspective is that the business has to be ready to make investments in business process management, and the changes that go along with that, so that they can accommodate the reality of something that's being delivered as a service, versus completely tailoring a solution to every aspect of their business.

The benefit that they get out of that is a much lower total cost of ownership (TCO), especially around the deployment aspects of IDaaS.

Gardner: It's interesting that you mentioned business process and business process management. It seems to me that by elevating to the cloud for a number of services and then having the access and management controls follow that path, you’re able to get a great deal of flexibility and agility in how you define who it is you’re working with, for how long, for when.

It seems to me that you can use policies and create rules that can be extended far beyond your organization’s boundaries, defining workgroups, defining access to assets, creating and spinning up virtualized companies, and then shutting them down when you need. So, is there a new level of consideration about a boundaryless organization here as well?

Trulove: There is. One of the things that is going to be very interesting is the opportunity to essentially bring up multiple IDaaS environments for different constituents. As an organization, I may have two or three fundamentally distinct user bases for my IAM services.

Separate systems

I may have an internal population that is made up of employees, and contractors that essentially work for the organization that need access to a certain set of systems. So I may bring up a particular environment to manage those employees that have specific policies and workflows and controls. Then, I may bring up a separate system that allows for business partners or individual customers to have access to very different environments within the context of either cloud or on-prem IT resources.

The advantage is that I can deploy these services uniquely across those. I can vary the services that are deployed. Maybe I provide only SSO and basic provisioning services for my external user populations. But for those internal employees, I not only do that, but I add access certifications, and segregation of duties (SOD) policy management. I need to have much better controls over my internal accounts, because they really do guard the keys to the kingdom in terms of data and application access.

Gardner: We began this conversation talking about balance. It certainly seems to me that that level of ability, agility, and defining new types of business benefits far outweighs some of the issues around risk and security that organizations are bound to have to solve one way or the other. So, it strikes me as a very compelling and interesting set of benefits to pursue.

Let's look now, Paul, at your products. You've delivered the SailPoint IdentityNow suite. You've got a series of capabilities, and there are more to come. As you were defining and building out this set of services, what were some of the major requirements that you had, that you needed to check off before you brought this to market?

Trulove: The number one capability that we really talk to a lot of customers about is an integrated set of IAM services that span everything from that compliance and governance to access request provisioning and password management all the way to access management and SSO.
They can get value out of it, not necessarily on day one, but within weeks, as opposed to months.

One of the things that we found as a critical driver for the success of these types of initiatives within organizations is that they don't become siloed, and that as you implement a single service, you get to take advantage of a lot of the work that you've done as you bring on the second, third, or fourth services.

The other big thing is that it needs to be ready immediately. Unlike a traditional IAM solution, where you might have deployment environments to buy and implement software to purchase and deploy and configure, customers really expect IDaaS to be ready for them to start implementing the day that they buy.

It's a quick time-to-value, where the organization deploying it can start immediately. They can get value out of it, not necessarily on day one, but within weeks, as opposed to months. Those things were very critical in deploying the service.

The third thing is that it is ready for enterprise-level requirements. It needs to meet the use cases that a large enterprise would have across those different capabilities, but also as important, that it meets data security, privacy, and export concerns that a large enterprise would have relative to beginning to move infrastructure out to the cloud.

Even as a cloud service, it needs a very secure way to get back into the enterprise and still manage the on-prem resources that aren’t going away anytime soon. n one hand we would talk to customers about managing things like Google Apps, Salesforce and Workday. In the same breath, they also talk about still needing to manage the mainframe and the on-premises enterprise ERP system that they have in place.

So, being able to span both of those environments to provide that secure connectivity from the cloud back into the enterprise apps was really a key design consideration for us as we brought this product to market.

Hybrid model

Gardner: It sounds if it's a hybrid model from the get-go. We hear about public cloud, private cloud, and then hybrid. It sounds as if hybrid is really a starting point and an end point for you right away.

Trulove: It's hybrid only in that it's designed to manage both cloud and on-prem applications. The service itself all runs in the cloud. All of the functionality, the data repositories, all of those things are 100 percent deployed as a service within the cloud. The hybrid nature of it is more around the application that it's designed to manage.

Gardner: You support a hybrid environment, but I see, given what you've just said, that means that all the stock in trade and benefits as a service offering are there, no hardware or software, going from a CAPEX to OPEX model, and probably far lower cost over time were all built in.

Trulove: Exactly. The deployment model is very much that classic SaaS, a multitenant application where we basically run a single version of the service across all of the different customers that are utilizing it.

Obviously, we've put a lot of time, energy, and focus on data protection, so that everybody’s data is protected uniquely for their organization. But we get the benefits of that SaaS deployment model where we can push a single version of the application out for everybody to use when we add a new service or we add new capabilities to existing services. We take care of upright processes and really give the customers that are subscribing to the services the option of when and how they want to turn new things on.
We've put a lot of time, energy, and focus on data protection, so that everybody’s data is protected uniquely for their organization.

Gardner: Let's just take a moment and look at the SailPoint IdentityNow suite. Tell me what it consists of, and how this provides a benefit and on-ramp to a better way of doing IT as a service and business as a service.

Trulove: The IdentityNow suite is made up of multiple individual services that can be deployed distinctly from one another, but all leverage a common back-end governance foundation and common data repository.

The first service is SSO and it very much empowers users to sign on to cloud, mobile, and web applications from a single application platform. It provides central visibility for end users into all the different application environments that they maybe interacting with on a daily basis, both from a launch-pad type of an environment, where I can go to a single dashboard and sign on to any application that I'm authorized to use.

Or I may be using back-end Integrated Windows Authentication, where as soon as I sign into my desktop at work in the morning, I'm automatically signed into all my applications as I used them during the day, and I don’t have to do anything else.

The second service is around password management. This is enabling that end-user self-service capability. When end users need to change their password or, more commonly, reset them because they’ve forgotten them over a long weekend, they don’t have to call the help desk.

Strong authentication

They can go through a process of authenticating through challenge questions or other mechanisms and then gain access to reset that password and even use some strong authentication mechanisms like one-time password tokens that are going to be issued, allow the user to get in and then, change that password to something that they will use on an ongoing basis.

The third service is around access certifications, and this automates that process of allowing organizations to put in place controls through which managers or other users within the organization are reviewing who has access to what on a regular basis. It's a very business-driven process today, where an application owner or business manager is going to go in, look at the series of accounts and entitlements that a user has, and fundamentally make a decision whether that access is correct at a point in time.

One of the key things that we're providing as part of the access certification service is the ability to automatically revoke those application accounts that are no longer required. So there's a direct tie into the provisioning capabilities of being able to say, Paul doesn’t need access to this particular active directory group or this particular capability within the ERP system. I'm going to revoke it. Then, the system will automatically connect to that application and terminate that account or disable that account, so the user no longer has access.

The final two services are around access request and provisioning and advanced policy and analytics. On the access request and provisioning side, this is all about streamlining, how users get access. It can be the automated birth-right provisioning of user accounts based on a new employee or contractor joining new organization, reconciling when a user moves to a new role, what they should or should not have, or terminating access on the back end when a user leaves the organization.
What most customers see, as they begin to deploy IDaaS is the ability to get value very quickly.

All of those capabilities are provided in an automated provisioning model. Then we have that self-service access request, where a user can come in on an ad-hoc basis and say, "I'm starting a new project on Monday and I need some access to support that. I'm going to go in, search for that access. I'm going to request it." Then, it can go through a flexible approval model before it actually gets provisioned out into the infrastructure.

The final service around advanced policy and analytics is a set of deeper capabilities around identifying where risks lie within the organization, where people might have inappropriate access around a segregation of duty violation.

It's putting an extra level of control in place, both of a detective nature, in terms of what the actual environment is and which accounts that may conflict that people already have. More importantly, it's putting preventive controls in place, so that you can attach that to an access request or provisioning event and determine whether a policy violation exists before a provisioning action is actually taken.

Gardner: You've delivered quite a bit in terms of this suite's offering this year. Before we hear some more about some of the roadmap and future capabilities, what are your customers finding now that they are gaining as a result of moving to IDaaS as well, as the opportunity for specific services within the suite? What do you get when you do this right?

Trulove: What most customers see, as they begin to deploy IDaaS is the ability to get value very quickly. Most of our customers are starting with a single service and they are using that as a launching pad into a broader deployment over time.

So you could take SSO as a distinct project. We have customers that are implementing that SSO capability to get rapid time to value that is very distinct and very visible to the business and the end users within their organization.

Password management

Once they have that deployed and up and running, they're leveraging that to go back in and add something like password management or access certification or any combination thereof.

We’re not stipulating how a customer starts. We're giving them a lot of flexibility to start with very small distinct projects, get the system up and running quickly, show demonstrable value to the business, and then continue to build out over time both the breadth of capabilities that they are using but also the depth of functionality within each capability.

Gardner: Do you have any instances, Paul, where folks are saying, "We wanted to go mobile, but we're being held back. Now that we've taken a plunge, this has really opened up a whole new way for us to deliver data and applications to different devices and mobile, whether it’s the campus setting or road warrior setting." Any thoughts about how this is, in particular, aiding and abetting mobile.

Trulove: Mobile is driving a significant increase in why customers are looking at IDaaS. The main reason is that mobile devices operate outside of the corporate network in most cases. If you're on a smartphone and you are on a 3G, 4G, LTE type network, you have to have a very secure way to get back into those enterprise resources to perform particular operations or access certain kinds of data.

One of the benefits that an IDaaS service gives you is a point of presence in cloud that allows the mobile devices to have something that is very accessible from wherever they are. Then, there is a direct and very secure connection back into those on-prem enterprise resources as well as out to the other cloud applications that you are managing.
The other big thing we're seeing in addition to mobile devices is just the adoption of cloud applications.

The reality in a lot of cases is that, as organizations add those BYOD type policies and the number of mobile devices that are trying to access corporate data increase significantly, providing an IAM infrastructure that is delivered from the cloud is a very convenient way to help bring a lot of those mobile devices under control across your compliance, governance, provisioning, and access request type activities.

The other big thing we're seeing in addition to mobile devices is just the adoption of cloud applications. As organizations go out and acquire multiple cloud applications, having a point of presence to manage those in the cloud makes a big difference.

In fact, we've seen several deployment projects of something like Workday actually gated by needing to put in the identity infrastructure before the business was going to allow their end users to begin to use that service. So the combination of both mobile and cloud adoption are driving a renewed focus on IDaaS.

Gardner:  I know you can't actually pre-announce, and I am not asking you to, but as we consider what you can now do with these capabilities, perhaps you can paint a little bit of a vision for us as to where you think your offerings, and therefore the market and the opportunity for improvement in the user organizations, is headed.

Trulove: If you look at the road map that we have for the IdentityNow product, the first three services are available today, and that’s SSO, password management, and access certification. Those are the key services that we're seeing businesses drive into the cloud as early adopters. Behind that, we'll be deploying the access request and provisioning service and the advanced policy and analytic services in the first half of 2014.

Continued maturation

Beyond that, what we're really looking at is continued maturation of the individual services to address a lot of the emerging requirements that we're seeing from customers, not only across the cloud and mobile application environments, but as importantly as they begin to deploy the cloud services and link back to their on-prem identity and access management infrastructure, as well as the applications that they are continuing to run and manage from the data center.

Gardner: So, more inclusive, and therefore more powerful, in terms of the agility, when you can consider all the different aspects of what falls under the umbrella of IAM.

Trulove: We're also looking at new and innovative ways to reduce the deployment timeframes, by building a lot of capabilities that are defined out of the box. These are  things like business processes, where there will be catalog of the best practices that we see a majority of customers implement. That has become a drop-down for an admin to go in and pick, as they are configuring the application.
We're also looking at new and innovative ways to reduce the deployment timeframes, by building a lot of capabilities that are defined out of the box.

We'll be investing very heavily in areas like that, where we can take the learning as we deploy and build that back in as a set of best practices as a default to reduce the time required to set up the application and get it deployed in a particular environment.

Gardner: Well, great. I'm afraid we'll have to leave it there. You've been listening to a sponsored BriefingsDirect podcast discussion on the changing needs for and heightened value around improved IAM, and we have seen how explosive expected growth and change is forcing a move to more a pervasive use of identity and access management as a service or IDaaS.

And, of course, we've learned more about SailPoint Technologies and how they're delivering the means for organizations to safely allow access to all kinds of applications and resources anytime anywhere and from any device.

With that, I'd like to thank our guest, Paul Trulove, Vice President of Product Marketing at SailPoint Technologies. Thanks, Paul.

Trulove: Thank you, Dana. I appreciate the time.

Gardner: This is Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions. A big thank you also to our audience for joining us, and a reminder to come back and join us again next time.

Listen to the podcast. Find it on iTunes. Download the transcript. Sponsor: SailPoint Technologies.

Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast on the need for and innovation in improved identity and access management. Copyright Interarbor Solutions, LLC, 2005-2013. All rights reserved.

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Identity and Access Management Key to Security Best Practices in Changing Business Landscape

Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast on the role of identity and IT access management in the dynamic enterprise.

Listen to the podcast. Download the podcast. Find it on iTunes/iPod. Learn more. Sponsor: Hewlett-Packard.

Dana Gardner: Hi, this is Dana Gardner, principal analyst at Interarbor Solutions, and you’re listening to BriefingsDirect. Today, a sponsored podcast discussion on the role of identity and access management (IAM), and its impact on security and risk reduction.

We live in an age when any of us, on a typical day, has access to hundreds of applications, and perhaps we have improper access to some of those applications or data inside of our companies. We may not even know it. What's worse, our IT department might not know it.

Managing who gets access to which resources for how long -- and under what circumstances -- has become a huge and thorny problem. The stakes are too high. Improper and overextended access to sensitive data and powerful applications can cause significant risk and even damage or loss.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Oracle have been teaming up to improve the solutions around IAM. Through products and services, a series of best practices and preventative measures has been established. To learn more about managing risk around IAM, we will be talking with executives from both HP and Oracle.

Here with us today, we are joined by Dan Rueckert. He is the worldwide practice director for security and risk management for HP’s Consulting and Integration (C&I) group. Welcome, Dan.

Dan Rueckert: Thanks, Dana, glad to be here.

Gardner: We are also joined by Archie Reed, distinguished technologist in HP’s security office in the Enterprise Storage and Server Group. Welcome, Archie.

Archie Reed: Hi, Dana.

Gardner: And we’re also joined by Mark Tice, vice president of identity management at Oracle. Thanks for joining, Mark.

Mark Tice: Hi, Dana, thank you very much.

Gardner: Now, let’s look at this historically -- and I guess I’ll take this to Dan Rueckert. How have things changed around IAM and general risk and security around access to assets and resources in the past couple of years? Is this another instance of data explosion, or are there other implications for organizations to consider?

Rueckert: Thanks, Dana. When we look at IAM, we are really saying that the speed of business is increasing, and with that the rate of change of organizations to support their business. You see it everyday in mergers and acquisitions that are going on right now. As a result of that, you see consolidation.

All these different factors are going on. We are also driving regulations and compliance to those regulations on an ongoing basis. When you start to go with these regulations, the ability to have people access their data, or have access to the tools, applications, and data that they need at the right time is key.

It’s the speed, and it’s continuing to go on as we see the convergence of both the traditional IT systems or applications, and then the merger with operational technology, as we know it, from real-time systems, or near real-time systems.

Gardner: Archie Reed, how do you see this impacting the business climate? How important is this for companies in terms of their exposure?

Reed: This is a critical area that folks have to look at. There's a difference that we’re seeing when we go out and talk to customers, and they’re saying that security is a big concern. It’s a big issue for them. It’s not simple and it’s often not cost-effective, or the return on investment (ROI) is difficult to define.

When you talk about security being a big concern, there is a disconnect between it being a priority, or a high priority, for a lot of companies. It’s dependent on the specific company to have security high on the priority list. It’s often placed low because of that ROI challenge.

The reality in the market is that many things impact that security posture, internally, every time a new system is installed, any product or service defined, or even when a new employee joins. Externally, we're impacted by new regulations, new partnerships, new business ventures, whatever form they may take. All those things can impact our ability, or our security posture.

Security is much like business. That is, it’s impacted by many, many factors, and the problem today is trying to manage that situation. When we get down to tools and requirements around such things as identity management, we are dealing with people who have access to systems. The criticality there is that there have been so many public breaches that we have become aware of recently that security again is a high concern.

People are not necessarily taking it into their priority list as being critical, but tools such as identity management and general system management can help you to mitigate the risks. If we start to talk about risk analysis, and ROI being one and the same discussions, then we may be able to help companies move forward and get to the right position.

Gardner: Clearly, this is not something that product alone can tackle, nor services alone either. So, it's certainly makes sense that Oracle and HP are teaming up with a solutions approach to this. What is the overall solution approach, is this 60 percent behavior, 40 percent product? Dan, give us a sense of how this gets solved, when it comes to products and/or services?

Rueckert: Dana, it's definitely people, process, and technology coming together. In some cases, it’s situational, as far as working with customers that have legacy systems, or more modern systems. That starts to dictate how much of that process, how much of that consulting they need, or how much technology?

When we talk about the HP-Oracle relationship, it’s about having that strong foundation as far as IAM, but also the ability to open up to the other areas that it's tied into, in this case enterprise architecture, the middleware pieces that we want for databases, and other applications that they have.

You start to put that thread with IAM, combined with an infrastructure and that opens this up as a whole, which is key. And, enablement, as far as depending on the size and complexity or localization or globalization, tends to play into those attributes, as far as people process and technology.

Gardner: And this also relates to the Secure Advantage Program, as well as the HP Adaptive Infrastructure, can you paint a picture for us as to how those relate? I guess we can go to Archie Reed on this.

Reed: The first thing would be to understand what Secure Advantage is. Fundamentally it’s an evolution of HP’s Security Strategy. One thing folks may not know is that HP has been in the security business for over 30 years across most industries and the geographies.

Secure Advantage is effectively the embodiment of all of HP security prowess or expertise, as services, products, and solutions, and as well as partners that we can offer organization to help them deal with security in business issues that we've been alluding to through this discussion.

The challenge that HP sees is that most folks worldwide may have developed a relationship with HP, perhaps for a server or a desktop businesses or a software and printing businesses. Many are unaware how wide and how deep HP's security expertise is, across the entire business spectrum.

HP has been developing this Secure Advantage Program over the last few years to essentially allow people to take a broader look at our security portfolio. I'll give you a specific example. I said we have been in the business for over 30 years now, and one thing that many folks aren't aware of is that HP has been engaged at the core of all the ATM networks around the world.

In fact, we’re directly involved in over 70 percent of ATM transactions. So, when you walk up to a bank, you put in your debit card or your credit card, you ask for $100 or 100 Euros, whatever it maybe anywhere around the world. Behind the scenes, HP technology, policies, and process have been worked on to ensure that the data is encrypted, that all of the banks and ATM network folks can talk to each other without necessarily knowing everything about them or who they are working with.

It’s secured through a set of processes. I am not going into the details obviously, but this is something that is an incredibly complex situation with a huge set of regulations on a worldwide basis about what can and can't be done, and what should be done. HP is right at the core of that, with encryption technology, with processes, with services and products that span the gamut. That is a really good example of where Secure Advantage comes into play.

We are engaged in the standards development behind the scenes. We have many patents and many processes that help these banks put together what they need to make it all work. That's the sort of expertise we bring, when we go talk to companies in situations where they need to implement tools such as identity management and access management tools. Does that make sense?

Gardner: Sure, it does. Mark Tice, tell us from Oracle's perspective, why is it important to have a complete solution approach to this? It seems like so many applications, so many different cracks, if you will, in the foundation. What’s the philosophy from Oracle in terms of getting a comprehensive control over identity and access management?

Tice: Well, one of the things that we really encourage, and this is where we get great alignment with the folks at HP.

One of the things that we really work hard to do is make sure that first off, before breaking ground on one of these projects, customers put in place a complete framework, or architecture for their security in identity management, so that they really have a complete design that addresses all of their needs. We then encourage them to take things on one piece at a time. We design for the big bang, but actually recommend implementing on a piece by piece basis.

Gardner: Let's get into a little more detail about how companies actually come to grips with this. You can't start solving the problem until you have a sense of what the problem is. How significant is this? How out of control are the access and identity solutions and safeguards in companies? Dan Rueckert, you want to take a step with that?

Rueckert: It depends, now that we start to think about each industry and those areas that have the regulations and compliance issues and standards of business. As Archie said, the financial services area is very sophisticated in a lot of things they do. Once again, it’s the speed of business and the changes from mergers and acquisitions that have started to occur.

When we get into more traditional business, maybe heavy process in certain aspects, you might see lesser controls. But now, as we start to get into access into certain areas of a process facility that tie together with the system, it starts to bring that together also. So, you have that different view.

Gardner: Let's look closely at the actual solutions. How do companies get started with this? Let's go to you, Archie. What are some of the first steps that you should take in order to gauge the problem and then start putting in the proper solution?

Reed: When we start thinking about security, one of the first things that people look at generally is some sort of risk analysis. As an example, HP has an analysis toolkit that we offer as a service to help folks decide what is critical to them. It takes all sorts of inputs, the regulations that are impacting your business, the internal drivers to ensure that your business not only is secured, but also moving in the right direction that you wanted to move.

Within this toolkit, called the Information Security Service Management (ISSM) reference model, is a set of tools where we can interview all of the participants, all of the stakeholders in that policy or process, and then look at the other inputs that are predefined, such as the regulations.

If you are in healthcare, you are looking at the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). If you are dealing with credit cards, then you are looking at things such as the Payment Card Industry (PCI) standard, about how you have to handle the data, and whether you have to encrypt.

By having these things that are predefined, not only in terms of being more prescriptive for companies, which helps them a lot, but also being more accessible in terms of how quickly they can decide what's important, allows them to move on and decide in which order they’re going to implement their security strategy? They may already have pieces in place, and that's another part of the ISSM reference model that asks, “Where do you grade yourself on this, and where do you want to be?”

There is also in this gap analysis between what is and what should be or what is wanted. That allows the company to decide how they’re going to implement these sorts of things. That becomes a great way to then determine how to cost things out, and that's also an important factor for organizations.

Generally, beyond that, folks are looking at a triumvirate of focal points which shows this governance risk management and compliance (GRC), which essentially says, “Here are the drivers. What's the analysis that we are going to do, and what are the approaches we are going to take to deal with that?” And, they essentially align or deal with the contentions between business and security requirements.

Those sorts of things allow a company to get up to speed quickly and analyze where they’re at. You may have a security review every year, but a lot of companies need to do it more often in more isolated ways. Having the right tools come out of these sorts of things allows them to do ongoing assessments of where they’re at, as well.

Hopefully that's the bulk of the question, and we can go into a little bit more detail with Dan about how services help you do that.

Gardner: How about some examples? Do you have either companies we can talk about directly, or use-case descriptions, where you have gone in. What are some of the pay backs? What are some of the savings or risk-avoidance benefits?

Rueckert: Let me start. When you truly get at the basics and you have the right access at the right time, you start to look at whether you have someone waiting to have something done from a system perspective.

It takes time, it wastes time, and somebody not doing what they were hired to do as far as their general responsibilities. So, there are labor efficiencies that can be gained by having that type of access, and then you get into the number of incidents or request to a help desk to enable someone who says “I am having a problem, help me”.

You start to look at these labor efficiencies from just a pure IT perspective. If you don't have the things that you need to do your job, you then hit the bottom-line tremendously in the line of business in that value chain. So it can cascade out tremendously as far as that.

The other is access, as far as your partners in conducting business. If they don't have what they need from an external point, they can hold up payments or shipments that you might need. All different sorts of people rely on this. I need to validate, I need to know who you are, so then I can conduct my business as I need to.

Reed: Another way to look at this is, when you consider how companies today are not only trying to be more efficient, provide cost savings, analyze, and do more with less -- whichever way you want to phrase it -- there is also an approach that says, “Let's consolidate our datacenters. Let's bring everything together and minimize the amount of stuff on the network. Let's do whatever we can to try and resolve the sort of cost issues.”

Again, when you start to think about who can do what, who has access to what and how much can they do, regardless of how you do those consolidation efforts, you need to consider security.

So, I would also raise the HP Adaptive Infrastructure as an example of how we help customers deal with those challenges of reconciling between the two. Adaptive Infrastructure is essentially a portfolio that help customers at all their data centers, from the high-cost silos where everybody has their Internet on their own servers, and they all have their own hardware in place to low-cost pooled assets.

That allows an IT department to move to that service provider model that a lot are trying to get to, while meeting needs. We help customers evolve to the next-generation data center, 24/7, lights-out computing, blades in place, virtualization. You get that lower cost. You get the high quality of service, but you also cannot ignore the security as being a critical component to that.

I’ll give an example of some customers we’re helping with virtualization right now. Even in the virtualization space, where everybody is trying to get more from the same hardware, you cannot ignore things such as access control. When you bring up who has access to that core system, when you bring up who has access to the operating system within the virtual environment, all of those things need to be considered and maintained with the right business and access controls in place.

The only way to do that is by having the right IAM processes and tools that allow an organization to define who gets access to these things, because important processing is happening on the one box. You are no longer just securing the box physically. You're securing the various applications that are stacked on top of all of that.

Gardner: Of course if you get it right, it can be of great value as you move into other types of activities. Whether it’s taking advantage of application, modernization or virtualization, building out those next generation data centers, having your IAM act together so to speak, certainly there’s a strong foundation for doing these other activities better and with less cost and risk.

Tice: Dana, I’d like to jump in on that one. What we see when we first go into companies, when they don’t have this in place, is that most of their identity management work is done in silos. It's done in a department, or an app-by-app basis. The fact of the matter is that each department or each group has to make up their own security policies, implement them, and manage them. From a company perspective, it means that your security is only as good as your weakest department.

So, you've hit it dead on. Having the right policies in place, and then tools to manage and implement those, is critical. It means that you can act, instead of having to stop, think, and then act -- time, and time, and time again.

Gardner: Moving into the future road map, what we expect, it seems, is that not only is access management important for today’s infrastructure. As we continue to automate, ramp up rules and policies, and start using events-based inference and business intelligence, this also is a foundation for creating a more robust and increasingly automated approach to IT, as well as provisioning of services and application. This is particularly true, as we move into what we call cloud computing nowadays, where we are going to get applications and services from the variety of different sources.

So who wants to take the approach to the future, and have us build on that opportunity?

Rueckert: I’ll comment on just some of the things that are happening right now, and you haven’t talked about the mobility of employees.

We talked more traditionally about datacenters and maybe desktops, but now we have hand-held devices that are mobile in nature and contain a lot of power, and we need to make sure we validate that they can have access.

You can take simple examples of BlackBerry devices and other entities that now tie back into applications and key data that they need in the field, and can use wireless networks. It’s a tremendous benefit overall, as far as where we are going, and it’s why this is so important as we start to work towards the future.

Reed: I’d back that up by saying that, when we start to consider IAM, one thing we really haven't touched on, but sort of alluded to so far in the conversation, has been all of this process and other stuff that happens on the identity management side of house. The provisioning, the decisions, the policy management happens over the longer term. Access management is more of a defined policy and enforced in real-time. There is a lot of more to this overall aspect that relates to one of HP's core areas of expertise, management tools in general.

So, when we define the policies, when we decide what the procedures are for following that, we need good tools that allow you effectively to implement and write out what they are, and automate those policies and procedures, so that they are enforceable.

More importantly, over the longer term, changes occur. For example, in the last year alone, in 2008, there is an estimate of an extra 9,000 to 10,000 regulations that small to medium businesses must follow -- and that's not including what big businesses have to follow in terms of changes for the regulations they're already engaged in.

Now, consider the impact that has on being able to rewrite change, manage the policies across all of your business units, and consider what Mark was talking about in terms of businesses that have siloed security approaches. There is no guarantee, unless you have a comprehensive view over all of your systems, services, and business policies, that you can guarantee to the outside world that you are complaint.

Once we've got all this defined, we now need to monitor, and report at least internally, sometimes externally, that we are being complaint. This is another area where management tools and IAM in particular, allow you to say and prove that you have done what is required by the regulations.

Regulations are generally thought of as being driven by government bodies. If you deal internationally, that can mean a lot of different things in lot of different regions. But, regulations can also be internally driven.

They can be internal policies that you have decided as an organization need to be enforced, because you believe that if you want better customer service, you do things this way. Ultimately, it all comes down to making sure that the process is defined, is easily either automated or followed, and finally, and ultimately, reported on an adequate way -- whether it has been circumvented, incorrectly used, or, more generally, that the right thing was done.

Ultimately, it comes back to this discussion we had earlier, which is that GRC and things like IAM play a critical role in that. That's why we have chosen to go with the strategy that we have as HP, as part of Secure Advantage.

Working with folks like Oracle, who have some of the best tools out there in order to support certainly middle sized businesses, but also large organizations with huge, siloed security problems, different businesses, and different geographies. It’s a huge issue that companies need to resolve with tools, because there's no way to do it manually.

Gardner: Alright. Looking toward the next rev, if you will, of these tools, Mark Tice at Oracle, maybe you could outline what the plan for the future is for HP and Oracle working together and where the access management capabilities will come from? I surely don't expect their pre-announcements on products, but just a sense of where the technology is headed?

Tice: Sure. It runs down a couple of different threads. In your last question you touched on the cloud computing issue, and one of the things you will hear us talking about more and more in the future, is the emergence of identity management as a service.

That is, make it real easy for applications to leverage identity management services for access control, permissions, and such. Make it easy for them to access those. One, so that you can support a cloud environment seamlessly and easily. And two, you don't have to replicate a lot of security in identity management code in applications. You can have applications what do or they do best, which is support application logic and leave a lot of security infrastructure to tools like ours.

The second piece is in the area of quickly adapting to change. We see identity management right now as a 1.0 in a 2.0 piece, the very basics, like user provisioning, access control, single sign on, federation -- that is the ability to allow other entities from outside of your firewall and give seamless access for trusted sources.

We see this as kind of 1.0, the very basics that you put in place. Even in the 2.0 space, that's really where we see things like strong authentication -- that is making sure that people are who they say they are -- and tie this into real-time risk detection. So, if we are detecting fraud, we make sure that we challenge people to a fairly extreme degree, if we perceive there to be risk.

Also, in the area of real management, we see deriving a lot of access based on business function, as opposed to complex IT rules. As people move around in the organization, they do different things. As Dan pointed out, as they merge and such, access is controlled automatically, based on where people sit in the organization, and what they are working on, as opposed to IT rules. Those are a couple of the trends that we see on the technology side.

Reed: I just want to expand on those comments, as well as something that Dan mentioned earlier, which was the mobility aspect. If we’re truly looking at what's coming up, what companies need to deal with, and why this ability to be able to deal with change quickly and effectively is important, we have to look at the new employees that are coming into the market. We have to look at the new business situations or paradigms that organizations are dealing with.

The new employees are coming out of the universities these days. They've got all the Facebook and MySpace -- and all such things.

They’re also used to using their own kit. They're used to plopping down wherever they are, being able to work on what they want, using whatever equipment they want, and consider themselves masters of their own identity.

When they walk into a company, they would like nothing more than to be able to bring a hardware that they can use at home, can move around with, and still be able to access the resources they need to do the work that they have been asked to do.

We'd love for those to be HP bits of hardware, but the reality is, if you take a broader sense, you need to be able to deal with that situation. If you think about the companies and the way in which the things have been moving, that is to deal with more partners, they've got to deal with more outsourcing too, all of these situations where they are no longer in control of the identity of who is using their kit. They are responsible for it, but they may not be in control of it.

This is happening worldwide. The contractor market has been around for a long time, but is evolving in this respect. They expect to run their own equipment, but use your organizational resources to do their job. There are outsourced organizations that expect to get access to your blue prints to produce things for your company.

But you have all these regulatory issues that you have got to deal with, which require encryption, monitoring, and access controls to be in place. And again, these regulations are changing over and over. If we think more about the business sense than the technology sense, you've got to have available to the business users the tools that allow them to do those things in a secure manner, and allow them to adjust to the processes, as Mark was saying, in a rapid fashion, without compromising the security of the organization as a whole.

Gardner: So, in the future we'll have a number of different scenarios where the end point hardware might be any number of different options, only to extend that access and management to that individual, based on their role, their business process context, and so forth. Sounds like a very interesting time.

Reed: Absolutely. We've heard about the borders to the company not being anywhere, the castle metaphor thing -- being broken down. The network is no longer Secure in and of itself. There is no perimeter.

I fully expect that within the next five to ten years we will be carrying around all of our data and all of our essential knowledge on memory sticks or in the cloud, and that will be all it needs to sometimes get to work. There will be devices everywhere that we should be able to use -- be it a mobile phone, a mobile device, right through to a huge, honking desktop that just happens to be there.

Gardner: And IAM is really the key to unlocking that sort of a flexible future.

Reed: Yes. Fundamentally, IAM is about managing those relationships between who is coming into the network, who is getting access to things, why are they getting access, how, and when are they allowed to do that.

Gardner: And, when done right, there are many different benefits, not only risk reduction, but as we had been discussing, now we look into the future with a lot more flexibility in terms of how IT can be distributed and used.

Great. We have been talking about identity and access management, it's impact on security and risk, some of the new opportunities for using this in different scenarios, including cloud computing and distribution of a variety of devices, sometimes not even the organizations or the enterprises devices.

Helping us weed through some of these topics, we have been joined by Dan Rueckert, a worldwide practice director for security and risk management, at HP, C&I. Thank you, Dan.

Rueckert: Thank you, Dana.

Gardner: I have also been joined by Archie Reed, distinguished technologist in HP security office also in C&I. Thank you, Archie.

Reed: Thank you.

Gardner: And, Mark Tice, vice president of identity management at Oracle. Thank you, Mark.

Tice: Thanks, Dana, Archie, and Dan. Thanks for inviting me to attend.

Gardner: This is Dana Gardner, principal analyst at Interarbor Solutions. You have been listening to a sponsored BriefingsDirect podcast. Come back next time for more insights on IT strategies. Bye for now.

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Transcript of a BriefingsDirect podcast the role of identity and access management in the changing enterprise. Copyright Interarbor Solutions, LLC, 2005-2008. All rights reserved.