In today’s third in a series of topics covering Zero Trust principles, I’d like to delve into a very specific area of access control, the critical concept of Least Privilege. I’ve chosen this topic because its implications and potential impact are often overlooked in organizations, possibly because they simply aren’t aware of the potential benefits technology can offer. For that reason, I believe it’s crucial to shine a spotlight on it and discuss how technology can really help in this area.
To that end, I thought it might be useful to compile a list of questions you might ask yourself about your own technology, for access control and least privilege, in use by your organization:
- Can the technology be structured to control or prevent movement across security zones?
- Does it aid in reducing the threat landscape by minimizing the number of external ports that need to be open?
- Does it help in mitigating the risk of viruses and malware infiltrating the network?
- Does it support industry-standard multi-factor authentication (MFA) solutions as the primary access control barrier for all privileged users?
- Once access is granted, does it enforce the Zero Trust principle of least privilege for both insiders and external contractors/vendors?
- Can it enforce policies to dictate the specific resources each person can interact with based on their job function?
- Does it offer the capability to restrict access to specific IT or OT assets, protocols, applications, reports, or files based on role or job function?
- Can the ability to securely move files be restricted based on role or job function?
- Can it control the timeframe for which access is granted to assets, terminating access at the end of the specified period?
- Can it restrict access to an asset solely through a desktop application?
- Does it minimize access to passwords by obscuring usernames/passwords and preventing their circulation?
- Can it enable shared sessions for oversight, collaboration, monitoring, or even termination once a user accesses an asset?
- Are command line or graphical sessions effectively logged or recorded for training, forensic investigation, or audit evidence for compliance requirements?
- Can it assign a list of permissible commands for a user or role?
- Does it analyze the state of the machine/configuration before and after a session to report any changes made?
- Is the user interface intuitive enough for occasional users to navigate without training?
I could continue listing the capabilities that ConsoleWorks offers in addressing Zero Trust least privilege principles, but I’m eager to hear your thoughts and feedback on the ones I’ve mentioned. Are there any particular ones that stand out as more important to your organization’s needs? Are there those that you would like to understand better? Let’s discuss further.
And if you’re eager to take your defenses a step further – well, you’re in luck! Discover how ConsoleWorks can supercharge your Zero Trust implementation.