Controlled Access to Confidential Data Is Crucial

If your company is involved in information that is classified as proprietary or confidential, limiting access to that information is vital. Access control is a must for any company that has employees who connect to the Internet. The most basic definition of access control is the selective restricting information to a set of individuals and under certain conditions, says Daniel Crowley, head of research at IBM’s X-Force Red team that focuses on data security. There are two main components, authentication and authorization.

Authentication is the process of verifying that the person you’re trying to gain access to is who they claim to be. It also involves the verification of passwords or other credentials that must be supplied prior to granting access to any network, application or file.

Authorization is the process of granting access to specific areas based on the specific roles within a business, such marketing, HR, engineering and so on. Role-based access control (RBAC) is one of the most commonly used and effective methods to restrict access. This kind of access involves policies that define the information needed to carry out certain business functions and assign permissions to appropriate roles.

It is easier to monitor and manage any changes if you have a policy for access control that is uniform. It is essential to ensure that policies are clearly communicated to staff to ensure that they are careful with sensitive information, and to establish an procedure for removing access when an employee leaves the company and/or changes their job or is terminated.

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