The Importance of Access Control

Access control protects data physical and hardware from threats. It is especially important for companies that have sensitive information about customers and employees who require remote access to resources. A well-designed access control system limits the types of privileges users are granted, minimizing the impact of security breaches and ensuring that no one can view sensitive information or gain entry to areas where they shouldn’t be.

Access control is based upon the idea that an individual’s identity has to be verified prior to when they are allowed access to any resource. This can be accomplished by several methods such as multi-factor authentication, biometric identification, and passwords. They must then be granted access through an authorization system which typically is based on the sensitivity of the resource that are requested as well as the credentials being used to request them.

The authorization system can take into consideration a range of factors, ranging from the information the user is aware of–the passwords and PIN they use to log in–to what they’ve got–access cards keys, tokens or keys that generate OTP passcodes. It can also consider biometrics (fingerprints or iris scans, voice prints). The system then compares these to the privileges they’re asking for and, if everything checks out, it grants the user the right access.

A well-designed strategy for access control is an important component of any security program. This is especially true for healthcare organizations who need to be able to balance the needs of their staff with those of patients. The right protocols must be in place for both workers who work remotely and on site, and they must be continually reviewed and updated.

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