As workplaces become more mobile, with employees working remotely from a variety of locations on a variety of devices, identity management is becoming of greater concern for IT. Not only do you need to provide service to an increasingly mobile workforce, but you need to manage user access and permissions to ensure that confidential company data remains protected. Here are some of the biggest potential identity threats to an organization:

  • Impossible Logins. Even with a remote workforce, it’s not likely to have a user log in from two far-flung countries in the same day. If you’re unable to verify that a certain employee is on a business trip to a remote location, it’s likely that someone accessed their accounts from an unverified IP.
  • Lost or stolen devices. A recent whitepaper from Zebra Technologies identified device loss as the No. 1 enterprise mobile security issue. A lost or stolen device can be doubly damaging if its new owner uses it to log in to your network and access company data.
  • Impersonation attempts. If your external help desk number is publicly available, it is possible for someone to dial in from anywhere, pretending to be an employee. How would you find out whether they actually work for you?
  • Spoofing phone numbers. This can make identity thieves more difficult to detect. What happens if the call appears to be coming from an internal number, but the caller still sounds suspicious?

3 tools to help combat identity theft

It’s important to have an identity management policy in place, and to assess it on a quarterly basis to ensure that users are complying with corporate requirements. If any of the above scenarios were concerning to you, it is time to consider identity management solutions. The following are three tools that can help protect against identity theft:

  1. Multifactor authentication (MFA): Rather than granting access based on one piece of information, MFA requires at least two credentials from a user to successfully log in. These can include a combination of a password, security questions, security token and/or biometric verification. Some organizations have even implemented voice identification, which allows them to authenticate a caller based on a previous recording of their voice.
  • Identity and access management (IAM): IAM tools allow businesses to manage the identities and access rights of their employees, and create rules around access and permissions. With this software, you can easily monitor and control all employee access in one place, either from your workstation or online (if it is cloud-managed).
  • Cloud access security broker (CASB): A CASB can have a similar function to IAM tools, except that its purpose is to monitor user behavior on any applications hosted in the cloud. This allows organizations to extend their security and access policies to infrastructure hosted by a third party, while monitoring network traffic between user devices and the cloud provider.

To learn more about our security offerings, visit CDW.ca/security

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