Advanced Privileged Access Management (PAM)

Today's security leaders face many challenges that make it difficult to protect privileged accounts—from hybrid cloud infrastructures to SaaS applications to a rapidly growing number of identities. Cyber attackers know how to use this to their advantage.

Traditional PAM was primarily aimed at administrators. Today, in addition to people's accounts, cybercriminals are also targeting computer identities.

Most attacks on companies now occur through a privileged account. If companies want to once again minimize their attack surface, they must take proactive measures that do justice to the complex IT environment. Extending existing Privileged Access Management (PAM) to Enhanced PAM could be a game changer here.

Why do companies need to think about the future with PAM?

Traditional PAM was developed at a time when security was the primary concern of administrators working with the physical network infrastructure. A diverse IT environment consisting of hybrid cloud and desktop environments, as well as an ever-increasing number of human and non-human accounts, as is the case today, was not a problem back then. This new IT complexity reduces the visibility of privileged account behavior among disabled users and makes it more difficult to identify and combat new attacks.

But it's not just the different cloud services and their corresponding identity management processes that are a problem: the increasingly long list of fragmented security solutions is also creating problems for security teams. These decisions often lack coordination and consistency, resulting in weaknesses and loopholes in a company's security.

Visualization of Extended PAM

Instead of traditional access control, companies today need advanced PAM to meet the demands of hybrid IT environments and cloud applications. This includes enabling security managers to better understand, manage and visualize privileged access across the entire environment. To be successful, Extended PAM is committed to following the following security principles and approaches:

Each user is a privileged user. An important step in minimizing the increase in attack surface caused by the hybrid cloud is to extend identity protection to all identities in the company, regardless of their position, in accordance with the motto “Every user is a privileged user.” That is, it does not matter whether it is a manager, an employee without a leadership position, or an external partner.

Identity is the new perimeter. With the disappearance of traditional network boundaries, identity has become the new perimeter. Thus, extended PAM always treats identity as a general authentication or access control flow. When policy-based authorization controls are implemented and mapped to identities, security managers can implement comprehensive zero trust and identify dependencies. This limits the attack surface as much as possible and ensures consistency and scalability.

Policies must be as dynamic as the companies themselves. Privileged access is rarely needed all the time. Rather, requirements can change hourly. For example, a user can create a short-term cloud storage account, which then becomes a potential access point to the company's infrastructure. Advanced PAM allows IT teams to set analytics-driven policies to quickly assess changing conditions and adjust access as needed. This saves valuable time on access management and improves security at the same time.

Lateral attacks are one of the most serious threats. To prevent attackers from spreading horizontally across the network after initial access and escalating their privileges without authorization, Extended PAM allows you to implement data-driven policies and controls. When used universally, hackers can be prevented from gaining access to an email account through a user's workstation and using that information to access other restricted areas such as cloud services and databases.

Key Components of Advanced PAM

To effectively implement security concepts such as Zero Trust and Identity is the New Perimeter, as well as the necessary dynamic controls, companies need an infrastructure that supports these concepts. The point is that advanced PAM is highly interconnected and depends on different underlying technologies and components. These include, among others:

Increased automation. The more accounts an organization has, the more difficult it is to manually monitor privileged access and identify suspicious behavior. Therefore, advanced PAM requires a high level of automation so that privileges can be effectively managed and potentially malicious activities can be stopped immediately. This provides greater security oversight and frees up security teams to focus on other important tasks.

Seamless data exchange between all security tools. Since most security applications cannot easily communicate with each other or exchange information, using different tools often results in unwanted data silos. To make matters worse, it is often difficult to transfer data from sources to destinations. This results in the loss of valuable information and the potential failure to identify key security events.

With this in mind, seamless communication is a critical component of an advanced PAM. In particular, APIs and built-in integrations enable real-time data exchange between security tools, enabling comprehensive analysis and faster response times.

Centralized and intuitive user interface. Some security teams must interact with multiple platforms and switch between programs and interfaces throughout the day. This not only takes time, but also leads to fragmented reporting. Additionally, constantly changing the work environment reduces team productivity.

Therefore, advanced PAM requires a single, unified security interface that is easy to navigate and understand. Centralizing access control into a single console makes it easier to measure risk, track progress, and share information with all stakeholders.


Sustainably securing the new era of hybrid IT environments and cloud applications requires advanced access controls that place identity at the core of cybersecurity and effectively implement a zero trust paradigm based on automation and seamless data sharing.

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