Information is undoubtedly the most valuable asset for an organization
in today’s digital world, and organizations must have a framework or a
system in place that assists in managing their digital assets. Identity
and Access Management (IAM) provides businesses with direction and help
on how to manage and access critical organizational information.
Identity and access management (IAM) helps
organizations to define and manage identity, roles, access privileges
of enterprise the resource (user, system, or process). IAM ensures that
organizations have total control over their information assets. The term
‘access’ means the ability of a user, a system, or a process to either
view/ modify/ delete/ create any organizational information or
information system based on the access rights assigned to it, once its
identity has been prooved/ authenticated.
So what are the five questions organizations should ask themselves when evaluating an identity management solution?
1. SHOULD WE GO WITH AN ON-PREMISE SOLUTION OR A CLOUD-BASED IAM PROVIDER?
it comes to choosing an IAM solutions provider, many organizations end
up in a dilemma. The question they face is whether they should go for an
on-premise solution or a cloud-based provider. Well, for starters, both
answers come with their own set of pros and cons.
On-Premise IAM Solutions
On-prem solutions are still relevant and have their importance when it comes to the following situations:
• When there is a regulatory or legal need to do so as this is the case in most of the countries today.
• With on-premise solutions, an organization gains complete control over their system.
organizations can provide a team of dedicated resources to manage their
IAM solution, then this would be the best solution for the
Cloud-based IAM Solutions
Cloud-based IAM providers, on the other hand, come as a boon to enterprises as:
• Cloud-based solutions can save them a lot of money on infrastructure and resources.
• The whole concept of IAM can be just used as a plug and play software.
• Cloud-based solutions are quick to implement and provide for greater scalability and flexibility.
it is up to the organization to decide whether they need to go for an
on-premise solution or a cloud-based IAM provider based on their
2. WHAT APPLICATIONS DO WE NEED THE IDENTITY MANAGEMENT SOLUTION TO INTEGRATE WITH OR SUPPORT?
cloud-based SaaS (Software As A Service) solutions have made things
much easier for the business world, they have undoubtedly made things
all the more complicated for IT administrators and Identity Management
departments. IAM requires IT administrators, to create a library of all
the applications needed to be run within the organization. Hence, the IT
team must come up with a plan to take stock of all the applications
that employees will be using and apps that need to be tracked. The team
also needs to talk to vendors and ask them to come up with a list of
applications that their solution supports.
Finally, the IT team
needs to create a list of apps that will be used by employees, apps that
need to be tracked, and vendor-supported applications. Most of the IAM
solutions available can integrate with thousands of pieces of software
3. DO WE NEED POINT SOLUTIONS OR A FULL PLATFORM?
solutions provide businesses with a solution to handle their present
IAM requirements. However, if you are thinking about the future, then
you need a solution that can give account for flexibility and
scalability. Many businesses make the fundamental mistake of choosing
solutions that satisfy their immediate goals and do not see the bigger
picture. An organization that opts for a point solution will soon end up
with a complex web of these point solutions connected with themselves,
difficult to manage, and having many open, unknown vulnerabilities in
their network systems. It also means that instead of a single-sign-on,
it will create too many logins and lots of structural challenges and
frustrations in the future.
A fully-integrated platform, on the other hand, has many advantages, such as:
• It not only solves present needs but also assists in planning for the future.
• With a fully-integrated platform, you have a single point of control for all your digital assets.
• In a nutshell, It is secure, scalable, flexible, and is easy to manage.
an IAM solution can be tricky, but once you start answering these
questions, you will begin to understand the requirements for an IAM
solution in a transparent manner.
4. WHAT BUSINESS TRENDS IMPACT OUR NEEDS TODAY? HOW ABOUT IN 5 YEARS?
industry has grown several folds in the past few years or so. Whether
we like it or not, the cloud is the future, and businesses need to start
taking into account this factor when planning for migration. Cloud IAM
solutions have changed the control parameters for information access as
IT administrators can now provide access not only to their employees but
also to customers, vendors, suppliers, regulators, etc.
choosing an IAM solution, businesses need to factor in every aspect.
Take, for example, if you are planning to open an office in China, you
cannot expect to buy a solution that only supports the English language.
One also needs to factor in business growth and take scalability and
flexibility into account when choosing an IAM solution. One concession
that businesses can give themselves is, most IAM solutions integrate
with almost all types of applications that an organization might need.
This fact is unlikely to change in the future. However, the most crucial aspect and trend in the next 5 years would be:
will have to spend more budget and resources on Identity and access
governance, and tools and technologies that help in achieving so.
(Identity As A Service) is one of the emerging technology areas that
continues to be the most explored and adopted identity domain in IAM
• Single Sign-On (SSO) will continue to
dominate the market for the preferred choice for a session and user
• Organizations will continue to face challenges in privileged access management
5. WHAT SIZE COMPANY DO I WANT TO WORK WITH FOR MY IAM SOLUTION?
final question in our list that an enterprise needs to ask itself is
the size and type of IAM company whose's services they would want to
use. You would like to choose the best in the IAM business, then
remember that you will need to shell out more money in terms of
licenses, installation, maintenance, and so on. IAM solutions are being
offered by various small, medium, and large companies, and each IAM
solution comes with its advantages. Larger companies might have
dedicated customer support staff and provide a better experience. They
can also be more trusted as they have been in the field for a more
Smaller companies, on the other hand, also have an
advantage as they often provide discounts and are more innovative.
Small & medium size companies might even be better suited to your
needs than larger ones. Hence, organizations must not just decide upon
the size of the company that they want to work with but also take into
account the efficiency and service capabilities before jumping onto the
thing to remember is that the IAM solution you choose will remain a
vital aspect in your business for many years. Hence, organizations need
to analyze every point, understand their requirements, and select a
solution that suits their requirements. Organizations should choose an
Identity Management Solution that meets both present and future needs
and also the solutions that address the basic need of having an IAM
solution i.e., Identity and Access Governance, IaaS (Identity As A
Service) services or solutions, Single Sign-On (SSO) capabilities,
Privileged Access Management (PAM) solutions. We at Paramount follows
a vendor agnostic approach. We first try to understand the business,
the risk, before recommending any solution. As of now, Paramount has
executed more than 40 large IAM projects across GCC,
covering all major banks, oil & gas, aviation, government entities.
With more than 15 years of expertise, we have some of the most
experienced IAM experts in the region.
Blog written by Gunpreet Singh - Service Delivery Manager - IAM
Know more about Paramount’s IAM Solutions: https://www.paramountassure.com/IdentitySecurity.aspx