Understanding Identity Fabric for ITDR and SaaS Security

May 2, 2023

May 2, 2023

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4 min

Protect your organization with Identity Fabric for Identity Threat Detection and Response (ITDR). Learn how to enhance security and mitigate identity-related risks.

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Josh Mayfield
VP Product Marketing
Understanding Identity Fabric for ITDR and SaaS Security
This webinar will cover:

Identity Fabric for Identity Threat Detection and Response (ITDR)

As end users move beyond the traditional network perimeter, organizations need new ways to authenticate identities, recognize threats, and control access to software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications. Identity threat detection and response (ITDR) is a critical component of an identity fabric and is key for effective SaaS security. Learn more about ITDR and how it fits into a mesh security approach.

Importance of Identity Security

Authenticating and authorizing user identities have always been an important aspect of enterprise security. But in recent years, a strong identity governance posture has become even more important. The expansion of remote work has changed the traditional notion of a security perimeter. Employees can work from anywhere and may access enterprise assets from a personal laptop, phone, or tablet. 

Plus, the use of third-party applications and software has exploded. A typical company might use hundreds of SaaS apps with varying integrations and degrees of access to sensitive data. Any breach of the SaaS layer could result in financial losses, regulatory issues, and damage to a company’s public image. Strong SaaS security requires continual identity authentication and authorization.

Understanding Identity Threat Detection and Response (ITDR)

ITDR is not a single product or program. Rather, it encompasses a collection of best practices and tools that are designed to:

  • Map identities, credentials, and privileges for both end users and services
  • Reduce vulnerabilities and identify misuse
  • Gather data to lower risk

An identity threat detection response framework aligns with the principles of zero-trust architecture by employing least-privilege access and continually requiring identity verification.

Key components of an ITDR strategy

ITDR is a security strategy focused on detecting and resolving cybersecurity threats that target user identities or access privileges. An ITDR solution will typically include:

  • Identity and Access Management (IAM): Access to sensitive information must be controlled. IAM uses tools like single sign-on, identity providers (IdPs), and password manager apps to manage credentials and verify users.
  • Detection and incident response: Ongoing monitoring ensures that IT teams can catch suspicious activity and ideally stop a threat before it occurs. If a breach does take place, they must assess the damage, remediate the issue, and put safeguards in place to prevent a similar breach from happening again. 

What Is Identity Fabric?

Identity fabric is a framework for securing access across a distributed network architecture. Ideally, an identity fabric will break down security siloes by integrating different IAM and ITDR tools. These may include different directory services and access tools, such as multi-factor authentication (MFA). An identity fabric should include a governance platform that centralizes the administration of security policies.

Implementing Identity Fabric for ITDR

Because each business and industry relies on different cloud-based services and applications, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to using ITDR. However, implementing an identity fabric generally requires defining a clear architecture layer model with an ecosystem of solutions that includes IAM, governance, and edge security. 

The identity fabric should integrate various identity sources, including SaaS applications, on-premise tools, and endpoint devices. Additionally, robust data collection and analytics can help enhance identity profiles and map contextual relationships across the enterprise. Finally, an identity fabric should have task automation in place to manage incident detection, response, and reporting. 

Identity fabrics will differ based on the organization’s size, scope, and required capabilities. They provide a flexible solution that allows hybrid teams to work efficiently while minimizing the chance of an identity-based attack.

What Are the Benefits of an Identity Fabric for ITDR?

An identity fabric approach addresses fragmentation by enforcing consistent policies and breaking down identity security siloes across the enterprise. Other benefits include:

  • Improved visibility: IT teams have more control over identity-related activities with a suite of tools to manage risk. 
  • Faster response: An identity fabric makes it easier to identify potential threats, shortening the mean time to respond (MTTR) when incidents do occur.
  • Better alignment: Centralized enforcement helps IT staff while ensuring that employees, contractors, and consultants have a better user experience, helping to align IT and business objectives.

Best Practices for Identity Fabric for ITDR

Shifting toward an identity fabric approach may seem daunting, but it does not necessarily require a complete overhaul of all your systems. Rather, you can integrate solutions into your existing architecture. Best practices include:

  • Policy development: Key stakeholders across the enterprise must work collaboratively to develop clear, enforceable security policies and guidelines for identity management.
  • Continuous monitoring: You must have tools in place to view, manage, and regularly audit all identity-related activities.
  • Training: Investing in ongoing training and awareness programs for employees throughout the organization will help reduce human error and train staff to recognize potential threats such as phishing attempts.

Challenges and Considerations for Implementing Identity Fabric for ITDR

Even the most carefully planned identity fabric solutions can face challenges and potential security gaps. Keep these considerations in mind when implementing an ITDR solution:

  • What are your existing security tools and how are they integrated?
  • What safeguards do you have in place for managing and protecting sensitive identity data?
  • What industry-specific regulatory requirements do you need to comply with?
  • Are you allocating resources to help your IT staff keep up with evolving threats and new technologies?
  • Do you need to train or retrain staff on security best practices?

ITDR is not a standalone solution. You should regularly assess your security posture to ensure that you have the right ecosystem of solutions to minimize your risk.

Improve Threat Detection and Response with Help from Grip

The Grip SaaS Security Control Plane (SSCP) offers identity threat protection and response across the entire SaaS layer, including both sanctioned and unsanctioned apps. By prioritizing risks and automating remediation, Grip SSCP helps IT staff quickly secure applications, manage users, and enforce security policies. The SSCP supports a shift toward cybersecurity mesh architecture and integrates with IT systems and network control points. For more information about partnering with Grip, request a demo or free SaaS security risk assessment today.

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