Every organization’s greatest asset is its people. The organization progresses only when the employees work efficiently, and modern-day businesses have understood this perfectly well.
Companies today are becoming employee-centric and are happy to provide employees with access to critical applications and software based on their roles and responsibilities.
Given the nature of today’s roles, multiple accesses are inevitable. For instance, an employee managing the CRM will need to have access to tools such as Salesforce or Zoho, allied data management systems and a repository; a marketing professional should be given access to marketing tools such as HubSpot, Hootsuite in addition to the brand’s social profiles and other accounts.
When the employee doesn’t get access to the right applications, he/she may not be able to do justice to the role, may feel frustrated and quit or carry-on with sub-optimal performance. While it is quite established that companies provide seamless accesses, does it equate to doing all that they have to?
In the day and age of identity theft and cyber attacks, providing your employees with relevant access is a job only half done, while making sure that the access is secure enough is equally important.
For instance, there isn’t a point in providing a CRM professional with a Salesforce account if his user ID is prone to security threats.
How can you secure the employee access?
The number of applications an employee would need is numerous. They are used on different devices and while every application is different, some are web applications, some are native applications, and some are cloud applications. So, how can you shield employees’ applications efficiently?
Typically, employee application shielding can be done in 2 ways; some companies opt for conventional solutions and some turn to the new-age solutions.
The conventional process of application shielding is quite a manual process, and ideally suits only a small organization that has a countable number of employees. Conventional security solutions include the following processes –
Individual monitoring of the access
This job is generally taken up by the IT personnel. He/she monitors the access and responds to suspicious activities on the account. This process is both complex and strenuous. Also, if the IT personnel is not vigilant enough, it is not difficult for a security breach to happen.
Contacting the helpdesk
Anytime an employee wishes for a password reset, he/she would contact the helpdesk. The helpdesk generally receives a lot of requests for password updates/resets in a day. It sometimes takes days to successfully change the password and the authentication methods they use may or may not be reliable.
Major dependency on IT department
When a company chooses to inculcate traditional solutions for security purposes, there is a major dependence on the IT department. The IT admin must provide, monitor, review and revoke the accesses. Any trouble regarding security raised by employees will be sorted only when the IT personnel spends significant time fixing it, a process that is time-intensive and expensive.
This, does not necessarily mean that you never choose conventional solutions. For a small team, it may be ideal. However, the fact that conventional solutions have more cons than pros cannot be denied. This is why, companies today, irrespective of the size or function are choosing modern-day solutions for application shielding.
Modern-day IAM solutions
The new-age Identity and Access Management solutions are robust, pragmatic and easy-to-deploy. They are tailored to suit any kind of application – native, web or cloud and can be installed on any device.
The modern-day IAM solutions such as Single Sign-on and Password Management give ultimate security to the accesses, here’s how;
All the employee accesses, irrespective of their type, are available on a single launch pad. All it takes is one strong credential to access every single app on the launch pad. The credential is generated via a stringent multi-factor authentication method which includes E-mail OTP, SMS OTP, biometrics, amongst others.
Multiple apps can be accessed at one go with a single, secure credential. Think of the time the employees would save on remembering/updating and resetting multiple passwords!
A lot of IDaaS based companies offer enterprise-class password management as a service. It is a complete package providing password resets without help desk dependencies, password sync with active directory, etc.
You can also avail of detailed reports that give a consolidated view of password resets and user adoptions on a single dashboard.
Generally, after adopting both Single Sign-On and Password Management services, companies breathe a sigh of relief as they no longer have to invest a lot of time, effort or money on securing the accesses.
Securing employee accesses is as important as giving one
The fact the employees’ access to apps must be well secured cannot be stressed enough.
So, let’s go to the old school way and better be safe than sorry.
Undeniably, when the employees’ access is secure, the entire organization benefits significantly, here’s how;
Evokes trust in the employees
An employee who works hard needs to be assured that his efforts shall not go in vain, and certainly not because of a negligent security breach. When access is secure, employees don’t have to ponder over the security risks that might affect their work. They can trust the organization and continue working with confidence and diligence.
As mentioned earlier, it is common for one employee to access multiple applications at once. Now, if he/she were to spend time securing every application used, it would take away a lot of his time, increase helpdesk dependencies and reduce the overall productivity. Therefore, as a best practice, the employee should just work on the application productively and the task of securing his access should be taken care of by the organization.
Eases access governance
It is important to make sure that the right employee is getting the right access; this is the crux of ‘access governance’.
For instance, while a creative designer will definitely need access to Adobe Creative Cloud, a sales professional would not need it. Now imagine is the companies finance accounts got into the wrong hands!
Such episodes of inefficient access governance often give way to potential security breaches. When the access is secure though, the organization knows that only the right employee is accessing the right apps and thus the complex process of access governance becomes simpler.
Unburdens the IT department
The IT department of your organization derives the most benefit when employee accesses get secure. The IT admin/personnel will not have to manually govern every single application, a process that is complex, time-intensive and expensive.
So, if you haven’t already, it is time that you secure your employees’ access to apps in the most secure way possible.
After all, securing employee access to apps is a seemingly small step, it is a significant leap towards securing the entire organization.