Identity management (IdM), also known as identity and access management (IAM or IdAM), is a framework of policies and technologies for ensuring that the proper people in an enterprise have the appropriate access to technology resources. IdM systems fall under the overarching umbrellas of IT security and data management.
Identity and access management systems not only identify, authenticate and authorize individuals who will be utilizing IT resources, but also the hardware and applications employees need to access. Identity and access management solutions have become more prevalent and critical in recent years as regulatory compliance requirements have become increasingly more rigorous and complex.
It addresses the need to ensure appropriate access to resources across increasingly heterogeneous technology environments and to meet increasingly rigorous compliance requirements.
The terms “identity management” (IdM) and “identity and access management” are used interchangeably in the area of identity access management.
Identity-management systems, products, applications and platforms manage identifying and ancillary data about entities that include individuals, computer-related hardware, and software applications.
IdM covers issues such as how users gain an identity, the roles and, sometimes, the permissions that identity grants, the protection of that identity and the technologies supporting that protection (e.g., network protocols, digital certificates, passwords, etc.).