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August 19, 2022 | By stephen
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The Importance Of Least Privilege To Your Security

In the digital world, cyber threats are prevalent and can have a devastating impact on businesses. As technology continues to evolve, so do bad actors’ methods to access sensitive company data. Now is the time to upgrade outdated security systems and implement practices that protect your company from the inside.

A 2019 Centrify survey revealed that 74% of IT decision-makers whose companies had data breaches said hackers exploited privileged credentials. Companies can protect themselves from this cyber threat by implementing the principle of least privilege. This article will discuss the benefits of this cyber security best practice.

What Is The Principle Of Least Privilege?

The least privilege principle reduces risk and increases your system’s security by limiting the privileges or access rights granted to users. With this cyber security model, users should be granted only the minimum privileges necessary to complete their tasks. In other words, it gives users only the permissions they need to perform their job and no more.

Many businesses may feel protected enough by their other cybersecurity solutions. However, surveys and testing have revealed that in 93% of cases, an external attacker could infiltrate a company’s network perimeter, and access due to credential compromise accounts for 71% of these cases. This aligns with Forrester’s prediction that 80% of security breaches result from compromised privileged credentials. For this reason, along with a few other benefits, implementing least privilege principles is essential for protecting your company.

Benefits Of The Principle Of Least Privilege

Reduces Liability

Issues might arise when someone accesses data, applications, or a network without permission. More open doors bring more liabilities and concerns, whether a curious employee or a bad actor. The least privilege access strategy reduces bad actors’ attack surface. Fewer doors mean less possibility of an incident.

Increases Ransomware Protection

Ransomware is a common and expensive threat. Since January 1, 2016, there have been over 4,000 ransomware attacks daily. By strictly restricting who has access to important systems, you limit the chance of ransomware and other malware attacks because the user or their operating system will not be able to install them.

Improves Data Classification

The least privilege principle requires network managers to maintain detailed access logs. Auditing, categorizing, and arranging data is necessary to implement the least privilege principle. IT support services can use this information to track the origin of a cyber attack. Network admins can identify the compromised asset, see who has access to it, and investigate it. In addition, keeping this data structured and audited helps companies fulfill HIPAA and HITECH regulations.

Least Privilege Access Prevents Catastrophes

Best practices for cybersecurity and data protection go beyond perimeter defense. Hackers can use privileged accounts to access sensitive data. The least privilege model locks doors if a bad actor enters an organization’s network.

If a business doesn’t follow this approach, compromised data, stolen information, or a ransomware attacks become real possibilities. Conversely, companies that learn, adapt, and use least privilege access principles are better protected from cyber threats.


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