Power to the People: Employees are Your First Line of Defense

While technology trends such as cloud services, remote working and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) are empowering people globally, security is suffering as a result. The legacy security approach of relying on firewalls and passwords to protect the enterprise perimeter no longer defends corporate networks in our highly inter-networked online world. Essentially, passwords are an ineffective protection model when so many people use so many devices to log on to so many services. Security best practice demands users choose unique, robust passwords with a mixture of letters, numbers and symbols; and change them regularly for all required services, applications and networks. This is an arduous mental exercise with even a handful of passwords, let alone the dozens that people need to use as part of their employment.

Many employees fall back on easy but insecure practices such as using the same password for multiple services; using memorable but easily hackable passwords; or writing down complicated passwords on a notepad by their computer. To use a motoring analogy, this leaves your car keys in the ignition while you go shopping. So it’s clear that the old security model is broken. What’s not so evident to many organizations is what to replace it with.

Centrify believes the solution is that identity becomes the new perimeter. Centrify solves today’s security problems with a single platform spanning cloud, mobile and data center that empowers people by putting privileged identity at the heart of corporate security. Centrify incorporates Single Sign-on (SSO), Cloud Identity, Privileged Identity Management and Multi-Factor Authentication in a system that makes it easier for employees to perform their jobs securely.

 Essendon Volkswagen CFO Les Hogan
Essendon Volkswagen CFO Les Hogan

One example is Centrify customer Essendon Volkswagen which has improved productivity, security and staff satisfaction since deploying Centrify Identity Service in late 2014. A leading car dealership in Melbourne, Australia, Essendon Volkswagen reports that its employees experienced numerous problems because of the large number of secure websites they had to access daily to do their jobs. Most employees required 10-20 passwords while some had as many as 40.

Remembering robust and regularly updated passwords was virtually impossible, so employees resorted to the insecure practices of using the same passwords on multiple sites or writing down passwords near their computer. However Essendon Volkswagen solved these problems of password sprawl and insecurity by deploying Centrify in October 2014. Employees now need to remember just one personal password. This means they no longer need to use, remember or even know passwords to the Volkswagen-related websites themselves because Centrify “remembers” them all.

Security standards have improved as a result. With just one password per user, Essendon Volkswagen can ensure it complies with proper Active Directory password complexity and change requirements. Centrify delivers a hidden advantage when employees leave Essendon Volkswagen, by easily removing access to websites that might be accessible from outside the dealership. Since some of these websites might contain private information about clients, this means Essendon Volkswagen has taken reasonable steps to comply with requirements of privacy legislation. Like 5000 other Centrify customers around the world, Essendon Volkswagen has improved the security of its enterprise by empowering their users – with Centrify.