By Natalie Bluhm Posted February 1, 2018
Managed identity and access management (IAM) solutions are making a major impact for IT organizations. Identity management is a major part of any IT organizations management tool infrastructure, and a new generation of tools is making it easier than ever for organizations to securely and efficiently run their operations.
Let’s begin by taking a look at how LDAP influenced the origins of legacy IAM platforms, and then discuss why a managed identity and access management solves many of the new pain points IT admins are facing.
LDAP Kicks Off Identity and Access Management Market
The modern IAM world really kicked off with the creation of the LDAP protocol. Tim Howes, our advisor, and his colleagues created the LDAP protocol to solve the the inefficiencies of the X.500 networking standards. LDAP ended up spawning two major identity management solutions: OpenLDAP™ and Microsoft Active Directory® (AD). Both of these solutions function as the identity provider. However, Microsoft AD would go on to become the most popular directory service in the industry, while OpenLDAP would become the open source leader and the solution of choice for highly technical organizations. Both of these identity providers flourished because environments were largely on-prem and homogenous. But, workplaces have changed significantly in the last two decades.
Changes in IT Create Holes in Legacy IAM Solutions
Today’s IT landscape has seen immense variation across all IT resources with most modern IT setups transitioning to a hybrid, mixed platform environment. Windows is now used in conjunction with Mac and Linux. The on-prem data center is being replaced by IaaS providers such as AWS, Google Cloud Platform, and Azure. Web applications such as GitHub, Slack, WebEx, and thousands more are making it easier for business to leverage technology. The modern IT environment looks far different from the Window centric network of old.
Of course, the new IT landscape has a trickle down effect to the IT management tools in place including the identity and access management platform. While historically, Active Directory has been the IAM solution of choice, in today’s modern IT environment the legacy directory service struggles. Active Directory doesn’t allow IT admins to integrate these new and varying resources into their AD environment. This forces them to adopt insecure management practices or expensive third-party solutions.
Managed Identity and Access Management has Arrived
The need for an IAM solution that can adapt to today’s fast-paced, innovative work environment has created the opportunity for a new generation of managed identity and access management solution. This new approach – called Directory-as-a-Service® – is centrally and securely managing and connecting user identities to the IT resources regardless of platform, protocol, provider, or location. With a cloud identity management solution, IT admins can connect users to systems (Windows, Mac, Linux), cloud and on-prem servers (AWS, Azure, GCP), web and on-prem applications via LDAP and SAML, cloud and on-prem storage solutions such as Samba file servers and NAS appliances, and wired and WiFi networks through RADIUS. With one identity, users can conquer their tasks with seamless access to resources, and IT admins gain a directory service that works with them in this ever changing IT landscape.
Read Grab’s case study to find out how JumpCloud centralized and secured their 3000+ user environment. You are also more than welcome to reach out to us with any questions about our solution for managed identity and access management. Interested in testing our cloud-based directory service? Sign up for a free account. You will have full access to all of our features, and your first ten users are free forever.