Typically, IAM solutions bring IT Security intelligence and work-flow operational efficiency. A poorly implemented and integrated IAM system is clearly not optimized for security, identity and access related capabilities. A theft can go unnoticed or detected late, this stands true even for organizations that have well integrated security capabilities in their IT Systems. Organizations that are prepared for IT causalities are better off firefighting than their lazy counterparts.
Understanding the various aspects of IAM technology can bring great insights whether your IAM Solution is optimized.
In this respect, learning about the technology and knowing if it is optimized for your business setting cannot be ignored. Here we break capabilities of IAM technology for healthcare establishment’s decision makers. Treat it as a must-have list to assess where you stand in Healthcare IAM capabilities and understand how well your IAM Solution is working in your business setting:
- Does your IAM Solution facilitate quick on-boarding? One of the fundamental capabilities of an IAM system is to ease the process of bringing new identities into the system. In the healthcare domain, such identities could be employees in clinical, administrative and/or management functions. Access related algorithm for newly hired employees in any functional specialization needs to be synced correctly with all the necessary systems, applications and database required at the moment to execute their basic responsibilities.
- Is your IAM Solution minimizing manual intervention?
Technology is supposed to minimize manual intervention, the case with IAM solution is no different. IAM Solution arms IT System with robust automation of various tasks including helpdesk access related, password management based tasks, facilitating access self-service, enabling single-sign-on, setting up a governance based notification mechanism for requests, etc.
- Does your IAM Solution do justice to access based reporting and auditing?
Auditing access from within the system is a key step in ensuring data security and maintaining compliance to key healthcare regulations. IT administrators, reporting managers and management need to keep track of who has the access, what information was accessed, how information is accessed, which information is/was accessed. IAM technology brings ease by reporting this information.
- Is your IAM system supporting creation of multiple authentication layers?
If a MFA setting does not allow a user to pass through smoothly, there is clearly something wrong. Security breaches happen when a hacker uses stolen login credentials to break into the network. Typically MFA based authentication adds layer of security that is aimed at preventing unwanted access. It also assists in achieving HIPPA compliance mandates. It is therefore important to speak with IAM experts and find the best MFA solution that fits well with healthcare enterprise in question.
- Is your IAM Solution bringing rapid and automated user provisioning/de-provisioning?
IAM systems are instrumental in bringing a visible change in productivity by granting access to right users within a matter of a few seconds. Managing the complete user life cycle in an automated and just-in-time basis is one of the reasons IAM systems are adopted in industries that are not bound by regulatory compulsions.
- Does it make connections between IAM system and various Apps?
Application Integrators that communicate with widely adopted healthcare applications such as Cerner, EPIC, McKesson, AllScripts, Keane, UltiPro, etc. bring much needed synchronization. They help in minimizing duplicity arising from management of access to various applications. If such a duplication exist, healthcare IT decision makers need to seek intervention of IAM experts.
- Does your IAM Solution safeguard electronic health records with correct access?
Hackers attribute high value to electronic health records of patients. Therefore complete access given to even the trusted employees can prove dangerous in case someone breaks into the system guised as the trusted employee. Limiting access and reviewing the information accessed by users becomes crucial to achieve seamless IT Security.
- Is your IAM solution helping you ensure data security and achieve regulatory compliance?
Basic requirement of healthcare regulations is to get in place a secured IT interface to interact with healthcare industry’s stakeholders. Leaking out or misplaced patient health records, financial information, insurance details can be detrimental to the healthcare brand and business reputation. It needs to do more than just following through the basic HIPAA and HITECH related regulatory guidelines.
- Does your IAM Solution support active management and control of privilege accounts?
The first and most important step to prevent cyber intrusions is to safeguard users. Next crucial aspect is to ensure that most vulnerable link in the system, i.e. Super Users (Privilege Users) are monitored for right access and setting up notification chain. Monitoring the one who is the custodian of the Identity and Access dynamics can be a game changer in achieving healthcare IT Security. For instance, when a privilege user’s account is tracked, a breach from an unlikely device or location can be flagged. This can place first stop to any unwanted intrusion.
Listed above are basic capabilities an effective Healthcare IAM System should cover. In addition aforementioned capabilities, it is crucial to manage complete access dynamics by maintaining an inventory of authorized and unauthorized devices, authorized and unauthorized software, and integrating secure configurations for all devices/users/apps/system.
For IT department, conducting a continuous (automated) vulnerability assessment and remediation should not be overlooked. IAM brings in automation in to the system, allowing IT departments to focus more on strategic aspects of IT administration than on manual intervention.