Access Management Handbook


Published April 2021


Over the years, you may have heard a lot about access management. In fact, we tended to use the terms “authentication” and “access management” pretty much to mean the same thing. But in fact there are differences between the two. While authentication validates a user’s identity, access management determines that a user has the permission to access a certain resource and enforces the access policy that has been set up for that resource.

Access management is very important when it comes to managing access to cloud resources. Nowadays, a person typically has to access numerous cloud apps throughout the day. This is a hassle for both users and IT: Users have to remember countless passwords; while IT need to endlessly reset forgotten passwords. The solution to this problem is SSO: By having one credential for all cloud apps, users can easily login once to several apps while IT saves precious time over password resets.

Since that single identity is only as secure as the authentication used to verify it, the method of verifying users’ identities becomes paramount to maintaining cloud access security. To this end, access management solutions and single-sign on solution offer granular control over the access policies defined per application. By requiring an additional authentication factor in high risk situations, a frictionless user experience is maintained.

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