4 in 5 IT leaders keen on cloud-based IAM, face challenges

Image courtesy of ForgeRock

More than 80% of global IT decision-makers have already adopted, or plan to adopt or expand, cloud-based identity and access management (IAM) initiatives over the next two years, according to a new report from ForgeRock and Google Cloud.

Conducted by Forrester Consulting, the study covered more than 300 IT executives globally on the state of cloud adoption. Findings show that while cloud adoption overall is increasing, investment and interest in hybrid cloud — using a combination of on-premises, public cloud, and Software as a Service (SaaS) – is particularly high. 

This suggests that IT leaders are realizing that hybrid cloud is a new reality for organisations and can be the quickest way to optimise their IT without disrupting business-critical applications. As ecosystems and cloud adoption expand, security professionals are increasingly aware of siloed data environments and the blind spots in their cloud and IAM strategies. 

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About seven-tenths (72%) of the respondents have a cloud-based IAM, but nearly half of them don’t have key security practices in place. Further, almost all IT professionals at firms with IAM technologies face challenges meeting customer needs in a pure cloud environment. 

About two-thirds (66%) of respondents say that process issues, such as flexibility and agility of IAM systems and the ability of those systems to support hybrid cloud worlds, is impeding their adoption.

Nearly nine in every 10 (88%) of respondents find technology issues, such as limited IAM functionality, lack of product scalability, and the inability to manage identity and access across current applications, is preventing their adoption of IAM in the cloud.

Almost half (48%) say that lack of cloud IAM expertise, or lack of support from leadership for cloud-based IAM adoption, is preventing them from making progress.  

Two-thirds of respondents say that process obstacles – such as the flexibility and agility of IAM systems, and the ability of IAM to move between different hybrid cloud worlds – hold them back. Additionally, more than 70% of respondents expect to see improved customer, employee, and IT benefits from investments in hybrid IAM. 

Peter Barker, chief product officer at ForgeRock, said that while IT leaders are faced with unique criteria and conditions that shape their IT strategy, hybrid IAM has emerged as a necessity in helping them deliver simple and secure employee and customer experiences. 

“The future isn’t just cloud, it’s hybrid cloud,” said Hamidou Dia, Google Cloud’s VP of global head of solutions engineering. “This approach gives companies the ability to reimagine their business and modernize faster, and IAM needs to be at the centre to ensure the future is both frictionless and secure.”