Organizations are home to numerous privileged accounts, and can provide anyone in charge of these credentials with exclusive access to business-sensitive information and systems. Strong passwords aid in limiting access to critical data to privileged users; however, it is painstakingly difficult to manually consolidate and manage corporate passwords due to their sheer volume. Tracking a large number of passwords via localized databases is not only a tedious process, but can also lead to unauthorized users gaining control over privileged accounts. Password vaulting solutions help in mitigating the risks associated with privilege misuse by automatically keeping all passwords and accounts secure and up to date.
Additionally, password vaults provide options to declutter and organize passwords based on enterprise requirements, which helps maintain a hierarchical list of password groups (based on operating system, devices, databases, and so on), making it easier for admins to perform bulk operations seamlessly.
Manual management of privileged accounts is a cumbersome process that involves the periodic discovery, tracking, and storage of tens of thousands of passwords in real time. Even the slightest negligence, from unavailability of admins to purposeful misuse of privileges, could put organizations at risk of data breaches.
That said, password vaulting solutions help eliminate password fatigue by automating the best practices of privileged access management (PAM), such as password generation, creation, rotation, monitoring, and deletion, thereby improving the operational efficiency. Additionally, an enterprise password vault helps eliminate hard-coding and manual updating of passwords by including an option to implement password rotation for complex passwords, including application-to-database and application-to-application passwords.
Credential vaulting solutions help simplify and streamline the password management process with automated account discovery; user provisioning and deprovisioning; and periodic password rotation, auditing, and reporting. Additional integration with other IT systems such as help desk software, IT analytics, and security information and event management (SIEM) tools ensures seamless compliance with regulatory standards (i.e., HIPAA, PCI DSS, SOX, and so on), and aids in timely and smoother resolution of password-related issues.
The role of password vaulting software is not limited to just providing a securing storage to enterprise passwords, but also extends to securing, managing, and governing access to shared sensitive resources. Following are the top benefits of leveraging a password vaulting solution:
Enterprise password vault solutions leverage automations to take stock of all the critical IT assets, domain and associated service accounts pertaining to corporate endpoints, and cloud and virtual environments across the network. This is usually followed by consolidating and storing the credentials in an auto-updating, secure repository, which comes with multiple levels of encryption using avant-garde algorithms like AES-256.
Password vaulting software lets you rotate passwords periodically, saving a considerable amount of manual effort and time. It also helps eliminate downtime by simultaneously rotating credentials used to secure access to confidential data and applications. Additionally, enterprise password vaults provide password reset options to support a wide range of target resources, either automatically through scheduled tasks or on demand.
To help admins get complete governance over passwords, enterprise password vaults provide the option to grant access to critical assets with varying levels of permission. Further, admins can set up a request-release workflow requiring users to provide a valid reason while raising a temporary access request to a particular resource. Upon the expiry of the requested period, the access to the resources will be revoked, and the passwords will be automatically changed to eliminate any possible misuse and unauthorized access to IT resources.
Similarly, orphaned privileged accounts that have no associated owner because of user unavailability will be automatically transferred to other authorized users. To ensure further safety, password vaults can provide secure access to privileged systems without revealing the passwords in hard-coded, plain text formats.