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Defining Shadow Access: The Emerging IAM Security Challenge
Defining Shadow Access: The Emerging IAM Security Challenge
Who it's for:
  • IAM Program Leads
  • Security Leads

Defining Shadow Access: The Emerging IAM Security Challenge

Release Date: 09/12/2023

Shadow Access is unmonitored, unauthorized, invisible, unsafe, and generally over-permissioned cloud access. This emerging Identity and Access Management (IAM) security challenge has arisen with the growth of cloud computing, DevOps, cloud native architectures, and data sharing. An increased use of access and entitlements that connect cloud services together, coupled with automated infrastructure and software development, results in incorrectly or unexpectedly permissioned accounts and resources.

The consequences of Shadow Access are massive and threaten to impact any organization that has an evolving cloud. This short IAM security document summarizes the background, causes, and impact of Shadow Access, as well as outlining the path forward to regain the benefits of a dynamic and secure cloud environment.

Key Takeaways: 
  • The background and definition of Shadow Access
  • What causes Shadow Access, including the complexity and process changes
  • The impacts of Shadow Access 
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