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Home > Best Practices in Identity Security

Why an Identity Security Platform is Essential to Address Today’s Most Pernicious Cyberthreats

An Identity Security platform enables IT and cybersecurity teams to centrally manage and control identities across attack surfaces, which are growing at an exponential rate. With new levels of control, visibility, intelligence and automation across all IT environments, organizations can significantly reduce the risk of successful ransomware, software supply chain breaches and other types of pernicious attacks—all of which are on the rise. 

Strengthening cybersecurity is the No.1 priority for IT investments in 2023, according to the ESG 2023 Technology Spending Intentions Survey.1 The proliferation of identities is a particular area of concern: 80% of all breaches today come from compromised credentials, according to Verizon’s 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report.2 

IT and security leaders recognize that Identity Security is an essential element in preventing and defending against ransomware, cloud, software supply chain and other attacks that take advantage of gaps in identity and access management. Key factors driving this trend include: 

  • Customer, developer, third-party and application identities are particularly problematic to secure, especially when using traditional identity and access management (IAM) and privileged access management (PAM) solutions that were not designed for the cloud era or the accelerated digital and workplace transformation taking place in today’s environment.
  • Identity sprawl, fragmentation of security solutions and responsibilities, and manual workflows are key challenges, especially with identities expected to double on average over the next 12-month period.3 Other challenges include lack of centralized visibility and control across identity workflows, lifecycle management and permissions sprawl across different endpoint types.
  • Cloud attacks, ransomware and software vulnerabilities are among the issues keeping security leaders up at night, especially at a time when staffing and budget concerns present big roadblocks to optimizing Identity Security. According to CyberArk’s 2022 Identity Security Threat Landscape Report, more than 70% of organizations experienced a ransomware attack in the past year and 71% suffered a successful software supply chain attack.4

Because of these and other challenges, Identity Security is becoming a key area of investment for IT and cybersecurity teams. According to ESG research, on average organizations are poised to increase spending on Identity Security by 68% in 2023. Nearly 60% of decision-makers said their Identity Security posture is a key enabler of digital transformation, cybersecurity modernization, application modernization, and compliance and governance modernization.5

An Identity Security platform leverages intelligent privileged controls, seamless secure access for all identities, centralized identity automation and orchestration, and real-time threat detection and prevention. These features enable a unified, holistic approach to reducing cybersecurity risk and make it easier for cyber teams to address and mitigate threats. Key capabilities include:

  • Centralized visibility across the entire enterprise estate, to discover overprivileged identities, data exfiltration, compromised credentials and other identity-related threats.
  • Session isolation and monitoring in concert to detect anomalous user activity and suspend risky sessions. This capability protects critical assets from attacks originating at endpoints.
  • Identity security controls that can block a ransomware attack even if the attacker is successful in delivering the payload to an endpoint. This includes the ability to limit applications’ access to data, preventing data collection for the purpose of exfiltration and data encryption, corruption and destruction.
  • Enforcement of least-privileged access through elevation and delegation.
  • Credential management, including password and key rotation, password policy enforcement, and consistent validation of users and devices requesting access.
  • Authentication of users, devices and machines with adaptive access based on context.
  • Secrets management, cloud privilege security, workforce and customer access, identity management and more, all managed from a centralized platform to reduce complexity for Identity Security and PAM. 

As identities proliferate exponentially, organizations need a modern approach to IAM and PAM that is comprehensive, unified and holistic. Adversaries are agile and sophisticated when it comes to exploiting gaps in identity, which is at the root of many of the most pernicious attacks organizations face today, particularly ransomware and software supply chain. 

An Identity Security platform enables IT and cybersecurity teams to shrink the attack surface and mitigate the risk of compromise, lateral movement and data exfiltration. They can leverage capabilities such as intelligent privileged controls, session isolation and monitoring, credential management and centralized visibility to reduce risk of successful attacks and empower digital transformation and business innovation.

With cybersecurity at the top of the list for IT investments in 2023, now is the time for IT and cybersecurity leaders to consider how they can benefit from an Identity Security platform to address today’s threats and position their organizations for a more secure future.

12023 Technology Spending Intentions Survey,” Enterprise Strategy Group, November 2022
22022 Data Breach Investigations Report,” Verizon, May 2022
3“Identity Security Maturity Model Survey,” CyberArk and Enterprise Strategy Group, September 2022
4CyberArk 2022 Identity Security Threat Landscape Report,” CyberArk, April 2022
5 Ibid. footnote 3

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