|By Eric Z. Maass||
|May 9, 2012 05:00 AM EDT||
In today's business world, data is the lifeblood of most organizations. As such, it has become a prime target for both external and internal threats. Data breaches made plenty of headlines in 2011 and don't show any signs of slowing down. In fact, a recent report from Privacy Rights Clearinghouse found that there were 535 data breaches reported last year alone. Whether it is for a Fortune 500 business, a university or a midmarket company, the protection of sensitive information is not only important for daily business functions, but is now a security measure required by law. As organizations of all sizes - not just large enterprises - struggle to keep up with evolving security and compliance requirements, many are turning to identity and access management (IAM) solutions to meet their needs.
Unlike traditional IT security technologies, which focus on perimeter and end-point threats, IAM solutions focus on identity lifecycles and access controls, as well as provisioning, authentication, certification and other identity-based processes. Previously seen as a luxury only available to the largest of organizations, cloud computing has increased the accessibility of IAM solutions for businesses of all sizes at a time when they are needed most. In addition, cloud computing provides the opportunity for security vendors to bring mature IAM technology to smaller businesses via a new deployment model - without starting from scratch and losing years of successful development.
Bringing SaaS into the IAM Fold
Originally hesitant to put sensitive data in the cloud, many companies are beginning to realize that cloud services can often be more secure than in-house data centers, as they are held to service level agreements (SLAs) and other third-party regulations. As such, more organizations are now readily adopting Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and cloud solutions to maximize efficiencies, lower total cost of ownership and ultimately "do more with less." How? Cloud-based IAM solutions can be deployed at a fraction of the time and cost of on-premise infrastructure. In addition, because cloud-based solutions are often much easier to use and manage, IT managers can focus on tasks that are more central to business goals rather than spending their resources trying to manage complex on-premise infrastructure.
For many organizations, the strategy for growth over the next couple of years will be heavily focused on expanding and optimizing their extranet community - SaaS providers, cloud service providers, supply chain partners, resellers, integrators and other business partners. The question now becomes how to secure these SaaS-based applications, cloud services and other third-party systems. Having a strategy for external audiences' identities and entitlements - in addition to internal employees - as well as visibility into all identity data is critical to a business's future success. Enter federation.
Federation, which enables companies to extend IAM capabilities to third-party applications and securely share identity information with external audiences, is becoming an increasingly strategic business tool. Two of the most common federated IAM capabilities are Federated Single Sign-On (FSSO) and federated user provisioning.
- Federated Single Sign-On (FSSO): FSSO capabilities allow a company's user base to access applications while avoiding the need to transmit shared secrets, such as passwords, to third parties - mitigating the risk of important credentials being compromised. FSSO also allows the user to log in to all applications in a uniform way regardless of whether they are housed internally or hosted by an external partner. The flip side of this capability is that the business can also safely provide authorized third parties with access to their applications. Using an industry-proven means of providing SSO capabilities to third parties - rather than using an in-house grown solution that hasn't been vetted or tested - can help companies strengthen security and increase compliance while improving productivity by eliminating password reset requests and other associated help desk calls.
- Federated User Provisioning: Federated user provisioning allows third-party applications to be included in the same identity and lifecycle process as internal applications. With the use of secure and open-standard protocols, organizations can seamlessly exchange identity data with partners and SaaS providers as well as provision users, roles and entitlements to external applications. Equally as important, using federated user provisioning, companies can also ensure that user role and entitlement information found on third-party systems is timely and accurate, mitigating the risk of important data being accessed by unauthorized users.
At the onset of widespread SaaS adoption, many companies did not consider external applications part of their network infrastructure - and so provisioning and other IAM capabilities were focused on on-premise systems only. As more and more critical data and applications become housed in the cloud, eschewing security liability for systems and information residing outside a company's four walls is a critical and common mistake.
Provisioning encompasses managing role data and access rights throughout a user's life cycle - from onboarding, transfers and promotions to the day they leave the company - and must be applied to both on- and off-premise systems in a timely and accurate manner in order to ensure proper access to important data. Otherwise, companies open themselves up to a variety of dangers, including data breaches, increased IT costs and compliance risks.
For example, effectively deprovisioning a user when they are no longer authorized to access certain resources is just as important as giving them access at the start of an identity life cycle. Failure to deprovision users who have left a company can result in orphan accounts, opening the organization up to a number of potential issues. Compliance requirements aside, ex-employees who still have access to SaaS or on-premise applications can potentially harvest corporate and client information for nefarious purposes. In other cases, it's important to have up-to-date entitlement information when users simply change position or are given different responsibilities. Otherwise, these events can lead to "entitlement sprawl" wherein users accumulate privileges that are no longer necessary for their jobs. In the age of the data breach, IAM solutions are more than just another add-on for a business's security infrastructure. An effective IAM solution will protect sensitive data, help to avoid complications in daily business operations, minimize potential legal woes and ensure a strong reputation among customers.
As technologies, such as mobile devices and social networking sites, continue to further convolute the security landscape, more and more critical assets are being placed outside a company's four walls. In order to put their security measures closer to these assets, many companies are implementing cloud-based solutions. Proficient cloud-based IAM tools can help companies strengthen security and increase compliance while benefiting from unparalleled savings, quick time-to-deployment and greater business efficiencies - a win-win for all involved.
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, will discuss the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. The presentation will also discuss how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics to discuss are barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what the future may hold.
Oct. 1, 2014 08:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,586
Whether you're a startup or a 100 year old enterprise, the Internet of Things offers a variety of new capabilities for your business. IoT style solutions can help you get closer your customers, launch new product lines and take over an industry. Some companies are dipping their toes in, but many have already taken the plunge, all while dramatic new capabilities continue to emerge. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Reid Carlberg, Senior Director, Developer Evangelism at salesforce.com, to discuss real-world use cases, patterns and opportunities you can harness today.
Oct. 1, 2014 08:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,109
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.
Oct. 1, 2014 08:15 PM EDT Reads: 810
Cultural, regulatory, environmental, political and economic (CREPE) conditions over the past decade are creating cross-industry solution spaces that require processes and technologies from both the Internet of Things (IoT), and Data Management and Analytics (DMA). These solution spaces are evolving into Sensor Analytics Ecosystems (SAE) that represent significant new opportunities for organizations of all types. Public Utilities throughout the world, providing electricity, natural gas and water, are pursuing SmartGrid initiatives that represent one of the more mature examples of SAE. We have spoken with, or attended presentations from, utilities in the United States, South America, Asia and Europe. This session will provide a look at the CREPE drivers for SmartGrids and the solution spaces used by SmartGrids today and planned for the near future. All organizations can learn from SmartGrid’s use of Predictive Maintenance, Demand Prediction, Cloud, Big Data and Customer-facing Dashboards...
Oct. 1, 2014 08:15 PM EDT Reads: 626
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices – computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors – connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo in Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be!
Oct. 1, 2014 05:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,360
Noted IoT expert and researcher Joseph di Paolantonio (pictured below) has joined the @ThingsExpo faculty. Joseph, who describes himself as an “Independent Thinker” from DataArchon, will speak on the topic of “Smart Grids & Managing Big Utilities.” Over his career, Joseph di Paolantonio has worked in the energy, renewables, aerospace, telecommunications, and information technology industries. His expertise is in data analysis, system engineering, Bayesian statistics, data warehouses, business intelligence, data mining, predictive methods, and very large databases (VLDB). Prior to DataArchon, he served as a VP and Principal Analyst with Constellation Group. He is a member of the Boulder (Colo.) Brain Trust, an organization with a mission “to benefit the Business Intelligence and data management industry by providing pro bono exchange of information between vendors and independent analysts on new trends and technologies and to provide vendors with constructive feedback on their of...
Oct. 1, 2014 03:30 PM EDT Reads: 939
Software AG helps organizations transform into Digital Enterprises, so they can differentiate from competitors and better engage customers, partners and employees. Using the Software AG Suite, companies can close the gap between business and IT to create digital systems of differentiation that drive front-line agility. We offer four on-ramps to the Digital Enterprise: alignment through collaborative process analysis; transformation through portfolio management; agility through process automation and integration; and visibility through intelligent business operations and big data.
Sep. 30, 2014 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,564
There will be 50 billion Internet connected devices by 2020. Today, every manufacturer has a propriety protocol and an app. How do we securely integrate these "things" into our lives and businesses in a way that we can easily control and manage? Even better, how do we integrate these "things" so that they control and manage each other so our lives become more convenient or our businesses become more profitable and/or safe? We have heard that the best interface is no interface. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Co-Founder & CTO at Octoblu, Inc., will discuss how these devices generate enough data to learn our behaviors and simplify/improve our lives. What if we could connect everything to everything? I'm not only talking about connecting things to things but also systems, cloud services, and people. Add in a little machine learning and artificial intelligence and now we have something interesting...
Sep. 29, 2014 06:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,910
Last week, while in San Francisco, I used the Uber app and service four times. All four experiences were great, although one of the drivers stopped for 30 seconds and then left as I was walking up to the car. He must have realized I was a blogger. None the less, the next car was just a minute away and I suffered no pain. In this article, my colleague, Ved Sen, Global Head, Advisory Services Social, Mobile and Sensors at Cognizant shares his experiences and insights.
Sep. 28, 2014 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,557
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) irreversibly encoded. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Peter Dunkley, Technical Director at Acision, will look at how this identity problem can be solved and discuss ways to use existing web identities for real-time communication.
Sep. 27, 2014 11:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,933
Can call centers hang up the phones for good? Intuitive Solutions did. WebRTC enabled this contact center provider to eliminate antiquated telephony and desktop phone infrastructure with a pure web-based solution, allowing them to expand beyond brick-and-mortar confines to a home-based agent model. It also ensured scalability and better service for customers, including MUY! Companies, one of the country's largest franchise restaurant companies with 232 Pizza Hut locations. This is one example of WebRTC adoption today, but the potential is limitless when powered by IoT. Attendees will learn real-world benefits of WebRTC and explore future possibilities, as WebRTC and IoT intersect to improve customer service.
Sep. 27, 2014 10:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,844
From telemedicine to smart cars, digital homes and industrial monitoring, the explosive growth of IoT has created exciting new business opportunities for real time calls and messaging. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Ivelin Ivanov, CEO and Co-Founder of Telestax, will share some of the new revenue sources that IoT created for Restcomm – the open source telephony platform from Telestax. Ivelin Ivanov is a technology entrepreneur who founded Mobicents, an Open Source VoIP Platform, to help create, deploy, and manage applications integrating voice, video and data. He is the co-founder of TeleStax, an Open Source Cloud Communications company that helps the shift from legacy IN/SS7 telco networks to IP-based cloud comms. An early investor in multiple start-ups, he still finds time to code for his companies and contribute to open source projects.
Sep. 27, 2014 10:30 PM EDT Reads: 2,310
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to create new business models as significant as those that were inspired by the Internet and the smartphone 20 and 10 years ago. What business, social and practical implications will this phenomenon bring? That's the subject of "Monetizing the Internet of Things: Perspectives from the Front Lines," an e-book released today and available free of charge from Aria Systems, the leading innovator in recurring revenue management.
Sep. 27, 2014 09:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,530
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges.
Sep. 27, 2014 08:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,401
There’s Big Data, then there’s really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at 6th Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, to discuss how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other machines.
Sep. 27, 2014 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,073
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Erik Lagerway, Co-founder of Hookflash, will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone and voice services to the modern P2P RTC era of OTT cloud assisted services.
Sep. 26, 2014 11:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,590
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehension and conference efficiency.
Sep. 26, 2014 10:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,517
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, will discuss single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example to explain some of these concepts including when to use different storage models.
Sep. 26, 2014 07:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,332
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in software-defined storage (SDS) purpose-built for Windows Servers and Hyper-V, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Gridstore™ is the leader in software-defined storage purpose built for virtualization that is designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Using its patented Server-Side Virtual Controller™ Technology (SVCT) to eliminate the I/O blender effect and accelerate applications Gridstore delivers vmOptimized™ Storage that self-optimizes to each application or VM across both virtual and physical environments. Leveraging a grid architecture, Gridstore delivers the first end-to-end storage QoS to ensure the most important App or VM performance is never compromised. The storage grid, that uses Gridstore’s performance optimized nodes or capacity optimized nodes, starts with as few a...
Sep. 26, 2014 06:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,709
The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace. These technological reforms have not only changed computers and smartphones, but are also changing the data processing model for all information devices. In particular, in the area known as M2M (Machine-To-Machine), there are great expectations that information with a new type of value can be produced using a variety of devices and sensors saving/sharing data via the network and through large-scale cloud-type data processing. This consortium believes that attaching a huge number of devic...
Sep. 26, 2014 06:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,624