Information security firm Cyber-Ark has updated its access management tools with the ability to audit exactly what actions technicians carry out while using administrator-level privileges, in order to meet compliance regulations.
Available immediately, Privileged Identity Management (PIM) Suite 5.0 brings together two existing Cyber-Ark products: Enterprise Password Vault (EPV) and Application Identity Manager (AIM). Both are used to manage admin-level passwords for IT systems and applications, with EPV controlling staff access and AIM providing a similar function for applications.
The new feature in PIM 5.0 is Privileged Session Manager (PSM), which acts as a conduit through which all privileged access is tunnelled. This allows the recording of all activity during an admin session, according to the company.
"It's like a privileged access proxy: you request access via PSM, and it retrieves the credentials from Password Vault and initiates the session on the target system," said Adam Bosnian, vice president of products, strategy and sales at Cyber-Ark.
This approach allows PSM to record everything the IT technician does, while he or she never actually has direct access to the admin credentials. PSM thus allows firms to keep a more complete audit trail for regulatory compliance, according to Cyber-Ark.
"You can now not only tell an auditor who was using the system and when, but what they were doing," said Bosnian.
Cyber-Ark's technology works by automating password generation, so that users have to request access via EPV using their personal credentials. This eliminates static passwords that are a potential security weakness.
The products are increasingly being deployed to manage other administrator passwords beyond Windows servers, Unix root privileges and other critical infrastructure, according to Bosnian. Some customers are now using it to control local admin privileges on Windows clients, for example, and access to applications such as SAP.
For this reason, PIM 5.0 also adds a plug-in for SAP Application Server, supporting automatic management of selected SAP accounts.
Pricing for PIM 5.0 depends on the size of the organisation, but small to medium-sized firms should expect to pay $15,000 to $18,000 (£10,300 to £12,300) for a basic system. Enterprise customers can expect to pay $50,000 to $60,000 (£34,000 to £41,000).
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