One of the proven ways of reducing security risks in an ERP is through access control, also called Identity and Access Management (IAM).
Businesses must carefully screen users and limit ERP access to a strict need-to-know basis to reduce the possibility of security breaches and to safeguard sensitive data. Some strategies to secure ERP data are:
Distributing Access Levels with User-Based Permissions
Grant high-level administrator or configuration privileges very selectively only to those who deserve them. Only allow the necessary level of access needed to do a job.
Access to ERP should be distributed according to some combination of job role, level of permission, and the type of document that access is given for.
Periodic Access Control Reviews to Identify Vulnerabilities
With organizational changes and workflow refinements, ERP users’ roles and responsibilities change frequently. That’s why scheduling periodic ERP access control reviews is always a smart idea to ensure everything looks as it should.
Ensure you maintain an audit trail of ERP access control reviews, which will help keep your company compliant with industry regulations like the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX).
Ensuring User Administration is Immediate and Continuous
In addition to routine audits, user management should be ongoing, with clear guidelines and process requirements to ensure instantaneous reflections of position shifts in the system.
This process involves adding new users, updating current users, and disabling inactive users. All changes should ideally be made as soon as a new employee is hired, a current employee is reassigned, or an employee leaves the company. The longer you wait to make the modifications required, the more unsecured your ERP data becomes.
Adopting Strong Passwords Policy and Updating Logins Regularly
In the context of continuously changing dynamics of cybersecurity threats, ERP data security starts at the level of the individual user. Good password hygiene offers one of the best defenses against unauthorized data usage.
All users should use a combination of letters (uppercase and lowercase), numbers, and symbols to ensure effective password management. They should update passwords at least once every six months and create a unique password for each app.
Integrate Identity Management Software
Well, creating and remembering different passwords for different applications might seem like a gargantuan task. This is where identity management software comes into the frame. It creates unique, hard-to-crack passwords automatically at the click of a button, and stores them all in a secure, encrypted digital archive.
Many identity management systems automate processes for ERP access controls such as user modification and access rights, thus improving productivity and freeing the IT department to concentrate on quality assurance. It can also track user behavior and incorporate mandatory compliance based on a collection of criteria that can be customized.
With many inexpensive and easy-to-integrate choices, identity management software is an invaluable line of protection against unauthorized data access and usage.
While the above guidelines can be adopted by all types of organizations, such systemic reform requires time and effort to execute. However, when it comes to protecting data, time is crucial.
Here are a few things you should do to set your ERP Access Control Strategy in motion right now:
Review the Current Access Control System
You need to know what improvements you would want to make before making any changes. A detailed review of your current protocol will allow you to recognize any loopholes or weaknesses in the access control of your ERP, which can serve as a road map for any further technical improvement.
Incorporate Security Best Practices in Current ERP Training
If you don’t inform your users regularly about the complexities of ERP apps, your data is vulnerable to mismanagement — regardless of how secure you perceive your system to be. ERP training is key to your business’ success and security, and it requires the incorporation of security best practices to ensure better data security outcomes.