What is Cloud PAM?

What is Cloud PAM?

What is Cloud PAM?

Cloud Privileged Access Management (PAM) is a cybersecurity solution that helps organizations provide secure and controlled access to their critical systems and data. It manages, audits, and monitors user activities and access rights to prevent data breaches and ensure compliance with regulations. PAM focuses on privileged user accounts, namely those that have elevated permissions to access sensitive data or perform high-level tasks within the system.

Why Does Cloud PAM Exist?

Cloud PAM exists due to the increasing prominence of the cloud and the inherent security challenges it poses. Traditional, on-premise PAM solutions can't effectively deal with the off-site, distributed nature of cloud applications, storage, and infrastructure. Enterprises and organizations operate on complex networks: their data is scattered across different platforms and they need to ensure proper security measures, like user access controls, are in place for each one. Therefore, the need for enhanced, cloud-based security gave birth to Cloud PAM.

Who Needs Cloud PAM?

Enterprises that operate in the cloud, use third-party vendors, employ remote workers, or simply have multiple users accessing their network could benefit from investing in Cloud PAM. Especially those in highly regulated sectors like healthcare, finance, or government, where confidentiality and data protection are of utmost importance.

How is it Used and How Common is it?

Cloud PAM works by granting just-in-time access and least privilege access, meaning users are given temporary access to perform specific tasks and only the bare minimum permissions are given to carry out these tasks. This can prevent potential attackers from gaining a foothold in the system, even if they manage to compromise a user’s credentials. In addition, all user activities are logged and monitored, providing a clear audit trail.

The use of Cloud PAM is becoming increasingly common as more organizations migrate to the cloud. According to a report from Gartner, the PAM market is growing at double-digit rates and is expected to reach $2.3 billion by 2023. This is driven by the increasing complexity of cyber-attacks, stringent compliance regulations, and the increased adoption of cloud-based solutions.

Cloud PAM and DevOps

In DevOps environments where continuous integration and delivery require frequent privilege level changes, utilizing a Cloud PAM solution is critical. It promotes efficiency without compromising security by streamlining the process of privilege granting and revoking. Hence, Cloud PAM is seen as an indispensable tool in the modern, cloud-based, DevOps context.

Cloud PAM


1. How does Cloud PAM ensure cybersecurity?  

A cloud PAM solution secures sensitive data by controlling and monitoring the access to cloud systems. It ensures that only authorized users gain entry to systems, applications, and data. It also helps enforce the principle of least privilege, meaning users are only granted the minimum permissions necessary to carry out their role using just-in-time access which minimizes the potential risk of a security breach.

2. What is the role of PAM in DevOps?  

In a DevOps environment, Cloud PAM plays an important role in managing access to development and production environments, minimizing the risk of unauthorized access. The frequent changes in such environments often require temporary access, which can be easily managed and logged with a cloud PAM solution, ensuring optimal security while maintaining operational efficiency.

3. What is the difference between IAM and PAM?  

Identity and Access Management (IAM) relates to managing digital identity and its access across applications and systems for a typical user. While Privileged Access Management (PAM) focuses on controlling and managing privileged users who have administrative or special access to systems, typically system admins or users with higher-level permissions. Both are essential for managing cybersecurity, but PAM focuses specifically on high-level access.

4. How does Cloud PAM work with SaaS systems?  

A Cloud PAM system integrates with a SaaS system to monitor and control who has access to the application, and what actions they can perform within it. It can also provide temporary or time-based access which is useful for short-term contractors or third-party vendors. Furthermore, a Cloud PAM can assist in meeting compliance requirements by providing a thorough audit trail of every privileged operation of your SaaS system.

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