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        eciding who gets access to which assets within an enterprise   FIRST A DEFINITION

D       is not a new problem; it’s been around since kings gave
        orders to put the castle drawbridge up or down for an
oncoming rider. However, with so much enterprise information
                                                                           Identity and access management represents a convergence of
                                                                       technical and business procedures designed to enable workers to
                                                                       have access to all the information—but only the appropriate
now residing online and in overlapping applications both inside        information—they need to do their job at a certain point in time.
and outside firewalls, with employees and contractors dispersed        It is composed of two primary functions: identity management
in offices around the globe, and with software as a service (SaaS)     (IM), which refers to the administrative and intelligence aspects
becoming an everyday part of enterprise architecture, the need         of managing identities, and identity access management (IAM),
for flexible and secure identity and access management has taken       which refers to the ways in which users access information.
on new urgency.                                                            According to Gartner analyst Earl Perkins, each of the two
    A February 2008 report from Forrester titled “Identity             halves of identity and access management can be further sub-
Management Market Forecast: 2007 To 2014” predicts that the            divided into two sections under Gartner’s preferred taxonomy:
identity management market will grow from nearly $2.6 billion          Identity administration, such as user provisioning and credential
in 2006 to more than $12.3 billion in 2014 (the figure includes        management, and identity intelligence, such as compliance
revenues from both software products and implementation                reporting and auditing, are parts of identity management. On the
services). Its authors, Andras Cser and Jonathan Penn, observe         IAM side, Perkins continues, “It really consists of verification
that “Even after years of healthy adoption rates, the IAM              and authorization. Verification would be the SmartCards and
market is actually just beginning its trajectory toward broad          passwords that confirm you’re who you say you are, and
adoption and deep penetration.”                                        authorization is the management tools that say, ‘Now that we
    With both the supply of identity management solutions and          know who you are, what information do you get to access and
the demand for the product offerings poised to accelerate in the       what are you allowed to do with it?’”
near-term, it is instructive to review the problems that identity          Done properly, an enterprise’s identity and access management
management solutions are meant to solve—and the obstacles that         system should automate, accelerate, and simplify account access
still remain along the growth path.                                    and management while keeping data protected. The reality is that

                                                                                                                  APRIL 2009 ECONTENT      21
The Changing Face of Identity Management

    Forrester predicts escalating growth in the identity
    management market through 2014, with services
           accounting for an increasing piece of global
            revenues. Source: Forrester Research, Inc.,
                                      Copyright 2009.

    as the number of business systems within
    an enterprise expands over time, each
    system may have strata and substrata of
    IM tools that are vendor-specific, though
    they seek to accomplish the same function
    for the same set of people. Symplified,
    Inc., a company that provides unified
    access management systems designed for
    cloud architectures, found in a December
    2008 survey of its customers that 37% of
    enterprises counted 7–12 passwords per
    employee, while 12% had 12 or more                     sense to revisit identity management           estimated the cost of resolving password
    passwords per employee.                                because while every company has identity       problems at between $10 and $31 per
                                                           management problems, it’s just overhead,       phone call to the help
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