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The Lockdown

Thycotic’s Cyber Security Blog

The #1 priority for improving cybersecurity? Implementing a Privileged Account Management Cycle approach!

Written by Jordan True

January 5th, 2018

In a white paper released in October 2017 by analyst firm KuppingCole, Martin Kuppinger makes the case for why companies need to pay more attention to privileged account protection at all levels.

Entitled, “Protecting the keys to your kingdom against cyber-attacks and insider threats,” he points out that Privileged Account Management is far more than just managing a few administrators and some shared accounts. Rather, he emphasizes that, “It is about all systems and a variety of account types on these systems. Privilege Management starts at the endpoint and reaches to servers, applications, and network devices.”

Privileged Account Management is far more than just managing a few administrators and some shared accounts

While not every organization may appreciate the significant cybersecurity risks associated with privileged accounts, Kuppinger ranks protecting these accounts as a top priority, emphasizing that “ requires not only functionally comprehensive solutions, but approaches that work for all types of organizations and an ever-growing number of users.”

Thus, this KuppingCole report serves as a helpful guide for how companies worldwide can start building and improving their own privileged access management and security practices. One of Kuppinger’s most useful contributions is how he defines a more comprehensive, end-to-end solution approach built around what he terms the Privileged Account Management cycle.

“This requires understanding the Privileged Account Management Challenge,” Kuppinger notes, “and setting up an action plan that covers not only technical but also organizational aspects and supports the entire Privileged Account Management cycle. It also requires new technologies such as Privileged Behavior Analytics and Anomaly Detection or Endpoint Privilege Management to better protect the endpoints that are the common gateway for the attackers.”

Available free from Thycotic, this white paper explains the challenges associated with PAM, describes the PAM cycle, and looks at the major components of a Privileged Account Management action plan. For example, when implementing or expanding a secure Privilege Management approach, Kuppinger says organizations must focus on covering the entire Privileged Account Management (PAM) cycle.

  • Understand the need for Privilege Management and its breadth and depth
  • Identify privileged accounts across all systems
  • Protect access to privileged accounts and restrict use
  • Monitor privileged account use
  • Detect anomalies in privileged account use indicating potential fraudulent activities
  • Respond to privileged account on time and with targeted actions
  • Continuously improve your Privilege Management

As a global leader in Privileged Access Management and Least Privilege Management, Thycotic is unique in offering an end-to-end solution that encompasses limiting privileges on endpoints with application control, along with protecting privileged account passwords across the IT infrastructure.

Thycotic Secret Server protects your “keys to the kingdom” by delivering an effective, affordable, and widely adopted password management solution. You can discover, secure, and manage privileged account credentials and passwords painlessly across the enterprise for a complete cross section of users including security, IT operations, compliance and business users.

Our release of Secret Server 10.4 solves one of the biggest operational security challenges facing organizations today: implementing a least privilege security posture without impacting end user productivity. The 10.4 release introduces least privilege control as part of Thycotic’s Privilege Manager product. It enables administrators to easily implement and enforce a least privilege security posture across their organization’s endpoints, eliminating a major attack vector without disrupting end user productivity. This functionality, coupled with native application control in Privilege Manager, can help prevent malware from exploiting local credentials on endpoints – the most vulnerable part of an attack surface.

The KuppingerCole report highlights a few key questions that every organization needs to ask itself when it comes to understanding—and improving—privileged account access and management:

  • Do you know about all your privileged accounts? (where they are located, who has access?)
  • Do you protect all privileged accounts? (do you vault, rotate, monitor and control access?)
  • Do you manage all privileged accounts? (do you efficiently automate management to help reduce time, effort and costs?)

If you answer no or are unsure about any one of these questions, it’s time you started defining your own Privileged Account Management cycle and evaluating your PAM strategy. Thycotic can help on every step of your journey.

FREE Privileged Account Management for Dummies book

FREE Privileged Account Management for Dummies book

Get smart about Privileged Account password security with this quick read