“IAM technologies are becoming threat-aware”: Executive Interview with Ravi Srinivasan, Director, Strategy and Product Management, IBM Security Systems

Executive Interview with Ravi Srinivasan, Director, Strategy and Product Management, IBM Security Systems who will be presenting in the keynote at Ovum Identity & Access Management Forum on 22 October.


Ravi Austin picIs the traditional use of Identity and Access Management (IAM) technology changing within an enterprise?

Yes.   With the rapid adoption of mobile, social and cloud-based services to expand the businesses and to collaborate with partners and consumers alike, the traditional use of IAM technology is changing to securely enable these transformations.  Traditionally, IAM technologies are deployed as operational management tools to help IT demonstrate compliance and support the internal risk programs.    Now, IAM technologies are viewed as key security controls, to help businesses improve assurance and strengthen the context in which access controls are determined and enforced across the enterprise.

How are IAM technologies evolving to safeguard the cloud, mobile and social interactions?

IAM technologies are becoming threat-aware. Cyber attackers target the weakest link within an enterprise – its people.  As organisations rollout new mobile apps or increase use of cloud-based services, they need to implement context and risk-based access to minimize the use of passwords to control access to business resources.   Organisations are also increasingly under pressure to not only authorise user access, but also inspect and block malicious content for affecting the business critical web applications and services.

Insider threat is on the spotlight.  What can organisations do to address the threats from insiders?

This is a challenging security issue for organisations around the world. Insiders are more than just administrators and root users with shared access. They can be employees with high risk access.  To tackle the insider threat, organisations are investing in privileged identity management that can manage and govern shared access and privileged user passwords, while auditing and recording the high risk session activities to address the growing insider breach and threats.

IAM projects are seen as big IT investments. What can be done to reduce the complexity of IAM deployments?

Two key area of focus are to minimize the level of customisation and target ease of deployment for targeted use cases.  Cloud-based models are gaining popularity to standardise the implementation of IAM for an organisation.  To help simplify the deployment and maintenance of IAM capabilities, IBM has introduced new, appliance-based form factors. These are available as a hardware or as a virtual appliance for easier deployment and reduced operational costs.

Are there any new announcements from IBM at the Ovum Identity & Access Management Forum?

Yes! IBM announced a new Access Management appliance for safeguarding mobile, cloud and social interactions. The capabilities called IBM Security Access Manager for Mobile (ISAM for Mobile) is released as both an hardware and virtual appliance form factors to secure mobile applications and enforce context-based access control to support the organizations BYOD and consumer access management alike.  In addition, IBM recently announced a new privileged identity management solution to govern shared access and record high risk sessions for audit, compliance and security requirements.

Does IBM have other solutions to address IT Security?

IBM’s identity and access management solutions are part of a security portfolio that provides the security intelligence to help organisations holistically protect their people, data, applications and infrastructure. IBM offers one of the broadest and most integrated security portfolios including solutions for identity and access management, security information and event management, database security, application development, risk management, endpoint management, network security and more. IBM operates the world’s broadest security research and development organization and delivery organisation. This comprises nine security operations centers, nine IBM Research centers, 11 software security development labs and an Institute for Advanced Security with chapters in the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific. IBM monitors 13 billion security events per day in more than 130 countries and holds more than 3,000 security patents.

Ravi directs the IBM identity, access and mainframe security portfolio strategy and product management based in Austin, Texas.  He has over 15 years of experience in product management, market strategy, and development in software and services industries.  Ravi meets and consults with senior management, lines of business owners and IT operations management around the world on their key security, risk, and compliance initiatives. He’s also a frequent speaker at trade, analyst conferences and customer events to share a worldwide customer perspective and insights on secure mobile, cloud and social business transformations.  Follow Ravi on twitter @ravisaustin

For more information on IBM security, please visit: http://ibm.com/software/uk/security

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