As organizations grow and extend into new business models, so does the challenge of managing identities and access privileges. The Gartner IAM Summit, which was held from March 16 to March 17 in London, allowed customers and vendors alike to get together and discuss new advancements, challenges and trends in identity and access management (IAM). The conference had many overall messages, but the IBM team noticed three key themes in particular: Governance is now mainstream, authentication is now a feature rather than its own market and there is now a rising interest in consumer identity.
Governance Is Now Mainstream
It is no secret that the identity governance market has been growing as more decision-makers discover the benefits of policy-led entitlements management, access recertifications, user reporting and dashboards and other capabilities. In fact, in December 2013, Gartner created a new Magic Quadrant for identity governance and administration (IGA) to focus on this important segment of security.
Many of the customers at the Gartner event may have had an IAM solution in place but were looking to learn about identity governance solutions. The advancement of identity governance was on full display at the IAM summit, with many engaging conversations and sessions surrounding it. The conference sessions varied from “The One Trick That Will Improve Your IGA Tool Deployments” to “Achieving Success With Role Management.” And, of course, Gartner presented its new 2015 IGA Magic Quadrant, in which IBM is now ranked a leader.
Authentication Has Become a Feature and Is No Longer Its Own Market
In the past, authentication had a stronghold in its own market within IAM. One of the key trends is that authentication is moving toward being a feature — rather than a standalone solution — in the IAM space. All-in-one software-as-a-service applications and integrated IAM solutions have made authentication and access management more consumable for clients. Going forward, legacy administration solutions will be used to augment an identity-as-a-service or Web access management solution. Based on IBM’s experience at the Gartner conference, it seems vendors are now moving toward an integrated approach where authentication is built into those delivery methods.
The Rise in Interest for Consumer Identity
Consumer identity is an area in which IBM saw increased interest. Organizations concentrate on managing the identities of their employees, contractors, partners and other users. However, managing the identities of consumers is a growing concern. Consumer identity brings new questions to mind and poses new challenges for the teams responsible for managing identities. If you are a bank or a startup that has been managing employee identities for decades, how do you now manage the identities of your consumers? As customers use more and more Web applications, how do the security requirements change? Do you use the same identity management solutions you have been using or try different ones? These are the types of consumer identity questions clients and vendors are trying to solve.
The biggest takeaway from the IAM summit was that everybody understands how important it is to manage identities.