In Blog, Identity and Access Management (IAM)

Identity Management Comparison

There’s a new wave of identity management comparison going on these days, and it isn’t in the single sign-on (SSO) or Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS) market. The hot new area of the IT landscape has become cloud identity management, and these next generation IAM tools are shaking up a sleepy part of the IT management tool landscape.

Let’s explore some of the benefits IT admins are experiencing by adopting these new, modern tools. First, let’s quickly recap the identity management tools that were used in the past, and why IT admins are glad to have new IAM solutions to work with.

The LDAP Protocol Kicks Off IAM

The modern era of identity management really got going when Tim Howes and his colleagues introduced the LDAP protocol in the early 1990s. With a lightweight and standard authentication protocol, a generation of IAM solutions were born. These were called directory services platforms or identity providers, and two in particular came to the forefront pretty quickly – Microsoft® Active Directory® (MAD or AD) and the open source solution, OpenLDAP™.

Active Directory Takes the Lead

Active Directory would quickly win the identity management battles in the early 2000s because of their huge Windows® install base. Then, web-based applications emerged, and the competition shifted to new areas of identity management. The competition produced solutions that were built to work on top of Active Directory and federate AD identities to web-based applications. For many years, the web application single sign-on space had much of the competition’s focus.  

The tidal wave of change was just gathering momentum, though. In addition to web-based applications, IT organizations were being flooded with Mac® and Linux® systems, the use of AWS® cloud servers, web applications, WiFi, and other non-Windows based solutions. The result was that Active Directory no longer connected users to all of their IT resources, and IT organizations realized that they needed a new approach to their foundational identity management platform, the identity provider.

Thus, a new generation of identity management comparison and competition kicked off, but this time there were completely different approaches available with the shift to the cloud. These cloud identity management platforms are taking a different approach to the IAM puzzle by creating a solution that is cross platform, multi-protocol, provider agnostic, and location independent. One such solution is called, JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®.

Using JumpCloud for Identity Management

JumpCloud directory-as-a-serviceCompletely cloud-based, JumpCloud is a full-fledged directory service that centralizes user access to systems (Windows, Mac and Linux), local and cloud servers, on-prem and web-based apps, physical and virtual file storage, and wired and WiFi networks. On one hand, this provides users with one set of credentials that they can use to access every IT resource that they need to do their job. On the other hand, IT only needs to implement one identity management platform to achieve widespread visibility and control over their environment. The day-to-day for IT admins and end users becomes just a tad easier when JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service (DaaS) is your cloud identity management solution.

How to Learn More

If you need some help deciding which IAM solution is a good fit for your environment after reading this identity management comparison, drop us a note. We’d be happy to walk you through how JumpCloud can help you secure and centralize your IT environment. The whiteboard video above is another great resource that will help you understand how JumpCloud differs from most players in the identity management market, or check out our YouTube page for more JumpCloud videos. More interested in testing it out for yourself? Sign up for a free account. Your first ten users are free forever, and you’ll have access to all of our features.

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