Three Wire in collaboration with BeyondTrust
Excerpt from BeyondTrust Blog: Strengthening Agency Cyber Defenses with Privileged Access Management
Modernization, expanding cloud deployments, and distributed workforces create new planes of privilege for adversaries to exploit. When designing the future state of a complex enterprise network, a least-privilege approach is critical to keep pace with adversaries and to protect critical data and assets.
With users and devices now accessing information, systems, and applications from anywhere, the mindset must be to never trust, always verify, and only allow privileged access when needed or contextual parameters are met.
Today, misused and abused privileged credentials play a role in over 80% of IT security breaches, according to Forrester Research. Without full visibility and granular control over access, including the ability to enforce the least privilege, there are increased risky pathways into your environment. The same study found that only 10% of government and public sector agencies believed that third-party vendor access was not a threat to their environment. So, if we can put a positive spin on this, it’s that most agencies are at least aware that they need to better secure remote access.
Given the current threat environment, agencies must have solutions that demonstrably reduce the threat surface and the risk of data breaches. Additionally, agency managers need solutions that can address compliance initiatives with security controls, threat analytics, and reporting.
A robust Privileged Access Management (PAM) solution can prevent attackers from gaining access to legitimate administrators’ credentials. PAM solutions can discover, onboard, and securely manage privileged credentials for human and non-human accounts across diverse IT environments.
The aim is at least two-part:
- To prevent threat actors—either internal or external—from gaining an initial foothold within an environment
- To restrict the ability of the threat actors to move laterally throughout an agency’s network once they have gained that initial foothold.
Over the years, people have perceived that strong information security equates to decreased productivity. Consequently, many organizations – public and private – have been lax on certain security measures, such as overprovisioning privileges, and allowing people broad access to systems for the sake of productivity.
If agencies have a robust solution in place, their people, systems, and networks will be more secure—avoiding security incidents and productivity-sapping help-desk tickets, while their workforce can achieve their mission goals more quickly and efficiently.
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