Identity management

In the old days, security meant putting a firewall around your physical network in your office and giving people a password to access it. The nature of cloud services, and the reason they work, is that you can access them from anywhere, so there has been a shift from strong border security to identification-based security.

Eighteen months ago, when The Review last looked at the cloud from an infrastructure perspective, we identified the Higgins Open Source Identity Framework as the key player in using cryptographic exchanges to secure claims-based identities. Today, the talk is more generic and centers around robust and trusted accesscontrol management systems.

Single Sign On (SSO for short) is the most generic, and obvious, approach to cloud-hosted application deployments. “An optimal access control management and SSO system must be centrally managed and have interfaces designed to extend the trust model into cloud systems,” says Dimitrakos.

“Federated authentication of users to cloud IT systems can increase the overall security model of those systems,” he adds – and it also simplifies the access control processes for existing authenticated users. Organizations that have already implemented role-based identity management systems should find it relatively simple to extend this management into the cloud.

There are several SSO solutions currently available on the market today and all offer their own unique solutions to one of the biggest problems with regards to cloud security – the user.

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