Enterprise Identity Management has reached an awkward adolescent period, with prior success, tumultuous present, and uncertain future. My colleague Ian Glazer at Gartner, published a thought provoking video entitled “Killing Identity Management in Order to Save It.” The basic premise, conventional Enterprise Identity Management inhibits dynamic business relationships across today’s prevalent web interactions. Traditional Enterprise Identity Management leads to lost customers, poor revenue growth, and inefficient business interactions.
Given the large historical investment in Enterprise Identity Management, how can IT Teams move beyond legacy practices and embrace New Web interactions, ad hoc team formation, and promote business relationships?
New Enterprise Identity Management Future
Consider, for a moment, (Alfred Hitchcock theme song playing),
The first priority for Identity Management is to facilitate business relationships, rather than simply authorize access.
Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google have built billion dollar businesses based on Identity and Identity Relationships, without implementing traditional identity management practices and infrastructure.
Enterprise Identity Management must transform to implement The New Web paradigm embracing external identity assertions, user based authorization, trust models, and dynamic relationships.
As Ian mentions, traditional Enterprise Identity Management is:
Static and relying on central control
Does not keep pace with the modern enterprise
Is often a separate set of services disconnected from core business picture
To create a more adaptive business, based on dynamic collaboration and accessible business capabilities, we must recast the purpose of Identity and definition of Identity Management.
Identity is about Relationships
People establish names and reputations to foster relationships. Relationships drive business interactions leading to opportunity and revenue. An Identity Management strategy built to adapt will:
- Place relationships at the center (e.g. Chris is a friend of Anne Thomas)
- Define identity based on attributes (e.g. Chris knows SOA and Cloud)
- Authorize access based on context (e.g. Chris is working on Project Tango)
New Web standards such as OAuth, OpenID, XACML, and XDI seek to build a cross-organizational, cross-stakeholder framework that decentralizes control, and encourages grassroots participation (similar to the principles accelerating Internet and Web adoption).
When searching for a Responsive IT framework that underpins a business friendly identity management strategy, IT geek-speak will include:
- Web Single Sign-On and Federation
- Fine-Grained Access Control
- API Security
- Cloud Identity Provisioning (SCIM)
The time is now to evolve identity management, adapt to contemporary web identity, and enable value web business models that increase customer interaction and expand channel opportunities.
1) Web SSO and Federation – 4.5 / 4.5.1