Many enterprise level risk management teams continue to explore the value and importance of PIAM related technologies.  Current research also indicates that on an enterprise level, physical identity and access management (PIAM) is tackling many of their most prominent security issues.  The objective of this article is to bring a greater awareness of PIAM solutions to our readers.   And, hopefully allow them to evaluate the potential of PIAM solutions for their own company’s organizational risk management plans and methodologies.

All too often, many organizations face the challenge to simply collect and organize the vast quantity of security- and incident-related data, without beginning to consider the job of analyzing that data and applying the resulting intelligence to assist their of making smart decisions.

Until the maturity of PIAM technology, the amount of available data has proven too great for organizations to utilize properly.

Without a comprehensive approach to collecting and analyzing all this data, organizations’ security processes often begin to break down. As a result, potential opportunities to thwart or mitigate a negative event are missed.

Now automated physical identity and access management (PIAM) solutions are becoming capable of extracting the most relevant information out of the virtual ocean of available data so as to more effectively and efficiently deliver actionable intelligence.

In an article written by Ajay Jain, President and CEO of Quantum Source, Jain offers a summary value statement of the importance of PIAM when he says, “Offering a vast number of capabilities that can dramatically improve security and operations for various organizations, today’s PIAM software solutions have become the new science of security”

According to Gartner, “Physical identity and access management (PIAM) deployments are increasing due to technology and product development, compliance mandates, a greater desire to manage alternative user populations such as on-premises visitors and contractors, and a sharp emphasis on timely and secure access.”

What is PIAM?


Physical identity and access management (PIAM) is a process which provides a unified approach utilizing policy-driven software to seamlessly manage the entire lifecycle of all types of physical identities, their physical access, and their correlation with physical security events and compliance requirements.

This PIAM process then focuses on analyzing the large quantities of metadata generated by disparate systems and devices across a network to identify statistical patterns and trends that provide correlation between elements.

Using risk profiles based on policies and parameters predetermined by management, PIAM solutions then analyze collected data to identify predictors, also known as indicators of compromise (IOCs).

Finally, PIAM technologies then use these predictors to flag potential threats and proactively alert security staff, increasing the likelihood of averting or containing security incidents before they result in a loss.

However, there is one caveat —-e.g. the intelligence generated by PIAM solutions equipped with predictive analysis capabilities is only as good as the available data. For that reason, when it comes to predictive analysis, the more data the more effective the solution will be, making integration with the widest possible range of disparate systems, both security and non-security, a necessity.

Given its potential to minimize or even avoid a potentially negative event, PIAM is a potentially powerful and effective tool for risk management teams to improve an organization’s overall security effectiveness.

Automation is another hallmark of PIAM solutions, which can perform a wide variety of processes that would be time-consuming and prone to error if performed manually. This further contributes to improving operational efficiencies and reducing costs. These processes might include on- and off-boarding identities, establishing and implementing role-based physical access assignments across single or multiple systems, supporting regulatory governance and compliance, and conducting audits and generating reports.

Our staff hopes that this short summary of this developing PIAM technology may have some importance to those risk management team members in you organization.

More recently, PIAM solutions are beginning to become a meaningful and cost effective tool for smaller enterprises.  Click here to read more…..

If applicable, please pass this information along to those risk management team members in your own organization.

By: Ben J Carnevale, Contributing Editor

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