The Technology Modernization Fund’s (TMF) latest awards targeting cybersecurity, zero trust, and classified cloud highlight the increasing importance of modernizing the federal government’s IT infrastructure to combat emerging cybersecurity threats.
The TMF was authorized by the Modernizing Government Technology Act of 2017 and is an investment program that gives agencies an additional way to deliver services to the American public more quickly and better secure sensitive systems and data.
The most recent TMF award led with $23.3M awarded to the Social Security Administration (SSA) for the deployment of Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), $11.1M to the Treasury to improve sharing of classified information with other agencies, and $6.2M to United States Agency of Global Media to deploy a zero-trust architecture. It is clear that cybersecurity threats are growing in complexity and frequency. Federal agencies of all sizes must adapt their security strategies to keep pace with the evolving threat landscape.
Combating Cybersecurity Threats With a PAM Solution
One of the most effective ways to modernize IT and combat cybersecurity threats is by implementing an ICAM Compliant and FedRAMP Authorized Privileged Access Management (PAM) solution which incorporates zero-trust principles. PAM solutions provide:
- Session management, monitoring, and recording for privileged access
- Credential vaulting and access control for privileged accounts
- Privileged account credential management
- Privileged account discovery
PAM solutions reduce the risk of credential-based attacks by enabling IT admins to manage and control the access to privileged accounts. These systems also enforce security best practices such as deploying multi-factor authentication across all users and devices, creating detailed event and audit logs and alerting IT admins to activity which could pose a threat.
Problems With Traditional PAM Solutions
Unfortunately, many government organizations have deployed a patchwork of disparate point solutions to address the core components of privileged access management. The prevalence of decentralized, isolated software products limits an organization’s visibility, damages security by creating functional gaps, and reduces administrator visibility over security controls and reports.
These inefficiencies are especially damaging to government agencies with limited IT staff and strictly controlled budgets. Organizations across the US government are often forced to expend valuable IT resources on complex and difficult to maintain software deployments, manual reporting tasks and tedious configurations.
Next-Generation, Zero-Trust and Zero-Knowledge PAM
The good news for agencies struggling with bloated and inefficient PAM deployments is that next generation solutions are much cheaper, easier to deploy and just as secure. Solutions such as Keeper Security Government Cloud (KSGC) were built on a zero-knowledge and zero-trust security framework, ensuring maximum security across every user on every device and location. In fact, KSGC is both FedRAMP and StateRAMP authorized.
What really sets next-gen PAM apart, however, is the fast time to value. For example, KSGC can be deployed organization-wide in a matter of hours, compared to a typical PAM deployment that may take upwards of six months to complete. KSGC enables small, budget strapped IT teams to rapidly harden their organization against cyber threats while also increasing the administrator’s ability to control access at a granular level and report on activity without jumping between disparate systems.
KSGC is a human-centric security solution that includes popular features commonly found on consumer security applications such as a browser plugin that automatically generates, stores and fills passwords. Keeper’s password manager tools have over 150,000 five star reviews on the iOS and android app stores. That same usability and attention to human-machine interaction has been baked into our government offerings.
In fact, KSGC has been streamlined and simplified from the administrator’s perspective as well. For example, KSGC includes over fifty out of the box integrations with popular security and identity management solutions including active directory, SSO, SEIM, and more. Admins are also able to quickly and easily manage sharing and credential access, a unique Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) feature that provides record level controls.
Investing in a FedRAMP Authorized PAM solution that utilizes zero-trust architecture is the best way to modernize IT and combat cybersecurity threats. However, many organizations are struggling to maintain bloated and expensive deployments of disparate point solutions. Keeper Security Government Cloud, a next generation PAM solution can help agencies of all sizes streamline their IT operations, improve security and increase visibility across their organization.