What is Identity Governance and Administration?


Organizations are comprised of all the roles, responsibilities, and functions carried out by different individuals and it is crucial to maintain coherence between them. Identity Governance and Administration (IGA) is an Identity and Access Management (IAM) solution that ensures all the operations between people and applications are running smoothly, are secure, and are enabled to achieve compliance.

Identity Governance and Administration is a vast section of IAM and plays several roles in an organization. Here are some of the prominent aspects of IGA:

  1. Identity Lifecycle Management: An employee’s role in any organization starts the day they officially join the organization. However, often times, they are left waiting to be productive while the internal teams scramble to provide access to their daily applications. An employee’s first few days are crucial in their relationship with the organization – thus, it is important to make this experience as smooth and positive as possible. This includes familiarizing them with the applications that boost their confidence and helps them understand their importance in the organization. IGA helps automate this process with their access enabled the day they arrive – birthright accesses as defined by the IT teams, HR, and managers. Throughout their time at the organization, the digital identity provided to them is their representative. This carries on until they depart from the organization. Even then, their access must be revoked in a timely manner leaving no room for orphan accounts – This is also achieved by IGA. This applies to full time employees, freelancers, contractors, third-party vendors, and so on. A well-defined lifecycle for each associate of the company provides a clear picture of all the accesses.
  2. Entitlement Management: This crucial process provides an insight into the access rights of each employee – or in simpler words, what they are entitled to do. This depends on various factors such as their role, department, and employment status in the company. This provides deeper information on all the roles, groups, and permissions. This imperative feature also lets an organization know how these accesses are defined and permitted.
  3. Access Requests: While each employee is assigned a set of access to applications through their identity, over their course of their employment, they may require additional accesses. These are not defined prior due to reasons such as nature of access, privileged information, and more. Thus IGA provides a user the option to request accesses in a simple yet efficient manner without waiting for IT to initiate it for them. This saves users’ time and helpdesk time and effort.
  4. Workflows: These are pathways to conduct several functions in an organization. Once an access request is made, it is clearly defined who the approver is and what is the process they must follow to approve or deny the request. Likewise, it also defines processes for escalations, delegation, notifications, and more in an organization.
  5. Policy and Role Management: These are the rules that provide guidelines for all the identity-related functions. Several accesses and rights are automatically provided to users, made possible by the policies that are predefined. In case of changes of roles and departments of a user within an organization, these are relooked at and changed accordingly.
  6. Access Certification: This is a crucial feature with respect to compliance. Managers and IT members are required to periodically certify the current set of accesses with users. This process ensures every access is in compliance with the policies. However, several times, these processes are tedious, and the technical jargon makes it challenging for the approvers. More so, the manual effort leaves room for several errors. With IGA, access certification can be carried out as often as an organization prefers. Managers are provided with a simplified dashboard that makes approval of tasks seamless.
  7. Auditing: This is a process that helps the organization stay secure in a bad actor ridden digital environment. It also helps organizations from the hefty fines that follow as a result of non-compliance to regulations. IGA enables this process by allowing a clear view of who has access to what and how, the information helps reviewers check if the current access roles and rights are within the business defined controls and policies. IGA also provides an efficient trail of accesses for every user. This important feature is also crucial in case of a data breach, to track down the accesses, find the loophole, and nip it in the bud.
  8. Reporting and Analytics: In today’s threat enveloped business landscape that needs to be conducive to remote work, continuous authentication is key in ensuring security. However, that can be challenging with manual efforts of looking at escalations. A lot of IT time is spent is looking into false alarms while the real issues might be overlooked. Reporting and analytics when powered with Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence in an IGA tool is an indispensable threat identifier and rectifier.

It looks for anomalous behavior and takes actions accordingly. Sometimes users are asked to authenticate with multiple factors to prove they are who they claim to be. Sometimes anomalies with sensitive applications mean the accesses are blocked altogether and if needed, managers are alerted. Reporting and analytics provide intelligent dashboards that ascertain the organization’s current security posture and trace several suspicious patterns for appropriate actions.

In the post-COVID-19 world, IAM itself is an irreplaceable tool. IGA ensures the minute functions and processes are addressed while keeping the bigger picture of security and compliance at the helm of all decisions.

Here are the different aspects in an organization that IGA addresses:

  1. Automation of processes: How many users are present in your organization? How many applications can each of them access? Are you certain all the applications used are appropriate? Answering these questions while managing access manually is a tricky affair. Unless an organization has a handful of employees, it is extremely challenging for the IT team to manage them without hassles.

IGA helps create workflows for access requests, approval, and rejections. These expedite the process as well as ensure the crucial information of “who has access to what” is known at all times.

  1. Staying compliant: Organizations in every industry vertical have to adhere to certain regulations. Failing to do so has grave repercussions, companies may even lose their licenses. IGA solutions ensure appropriate audit trails are available for all accesses. A general access dashboard can provide all the information to reviewers within seconds. Access recertification campaigns can be launched regularly by employees without complications.
  2. Scaling of organizations: As organizations grow, they must be able to do so without worrying about the rising complications between accesses and applications. IGA empowers organizations to grow and focus on business activities while their internal identity management functionalities are addressed by a smart solution.

Identity Governance and Administration is an indispensable tool in today’s digital landscape. However, several organizations are reluctant to imbibe this into their IT ecosystem because of certain complications that haven’t been addressed previously.

Myth 1:

IGA is too complicated to implement and use: This was a popular scenario some years ago. Many failed implementations did occur in the IAM industry. But, Ilantus has always ensured smooth implementation processes due to our 20+ years of extensive IAM experience. Our simple solution is seamless to use and can be managed by non-technical people without prior experience as well! It even comes with step-by-step guided help throughout the solution that helps users to be self-sufficient.

Myth 2:

IGA is only for compliance: The IAM solution allows organizations to comply with regulations. However, compliance measures are in place to ensure organizations adhere to cert of security and data hand standardsling. IGA helps organizations ensure this security – a crucial asset in today’s threat environment.

Myth 3:

Small companies don’t need it: SMBs have been known to be reluctant while investing in IGA. Key reasons are lack of expertise, lack of security budgets, and a misconception that they don’t need it. Due to this attitude, SMBs are unfortunately among the most favored targets by bad actors. They are unable to manage their accesses with ease and can easily crumble when a hack attack takes place. To avoid all of it, IGA is necessary. With solutions like that of Ilantus, IAM becomes economical as well with options to pay as you use. The solution stands out for its simplicity that worrying about an in-house expert wouldn’t even occur to them.

IAM solutions have evolved in the market today. For a seamless functioning of processes and accesses in an organization, a holistic IAM solution is imperative. Compact Identity from Ilantus provides IGA, AM, and PAM to organizations across verticals and market sizes in a converged manner.

Empower your organization with the best of IGA as well as other IAM aspects for continuous security and accelerated productivity. Get in touch with us for an expert assessment on your current state with respect to IAM and a future roadmap for comprehensive organizational security!

 


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