Organisations are shifting identity and access management (IAM) efforts from administration to a strategic focus on intelligence, says research firm Gartner.
Business intelligence (BI) has been high on the agenda for a number of year, but business is looking to broaden that to other areas, according to James Richardson, BI research director at Gartner.
"For example, joining together data in IAM systems and security logs with other data could be massively valuable to both IT and the business," he told the Gartner IAM Summit 2011 in London.
The need to limit costs and deliver real-world business results is forcing IAM professionals to have a more strategic approach, said Ant Allen, research vice-president at Gartner.
Against this background, Gartner predicts that:
by 2014, notable project failures will cause 50% of organisations to shift their IAM efforts to intelligence rather than administration
by the end of 2013, fewer than 10% of all authentication events will involve discrete, specialised authentication hardware
by the end of 2015, more than 50% of cloud-based IAM offerings will be hybrid solutions.
Although Gartner thinks it unlikely that enterprises will be using cloud-based services for all their IAM needs within the next four years, cloud computing is considered to be an important new enabler for IAM technologies.
First as a delivery mechanism where scalability is important, and second, as a way for organisations to outsource the integration of IAM with their back end systems.
Tim Dunn, vice-president of security strategy Europe for CA Technologies, said in a panel discussion that cloud computing is also galvanising the need for IAM.
Cloud computing will push more organisations to adopt IAM that have not done so before, he said, as they will typically not have the problem of having to deal with legacy systems.
According to Dunn, cloud computing will make the relevance of IAM more visible to the business, as well as providing a highly efficient way of managing identity, which could well change the way business views IAM in future.