Today, Microsoft announced a new name for their identity product family which encompasses familiar capabilities alongside new capability launches. Microsoft Entra covers identity, including Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), Permissions Management, and Verified ID.
Azure AD is a familiar offering and will remain available stand-alone. But it is now accompanied by a Cloud Infrastructure Entitlement Management (CIEM) offering and a decentralized identity offering.
At first glance, Microsoft Entra Permissions Management has a smattering of interesting functionality like visibility on permissions across cloud environments including AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure. It works to counteract permissions sprawl, enforce the least privilege, monitor and detect anomalies. For more information on CIEM, read this edition of the KC Navigator.
Verified ID is Microsoft’s implementation of Verifiable Credentials, a standard for issuing and verifying decentralized identity credentials. This allows identity credentials to be issued by identity providers (IdPs) outside of an organization’s ecosystem, and still be accepted with confidence and verifiability – hence the name. Verified ID serves some interesting use cases such as remote onboarding, secure access, and streamlined account recovery. It will be generally available in August 2022. For more in-depth reading on verified identity, read this Market Compass and be on the lookout for the update in Summer 2022.
Microsoft Entra also includes an administrative portal, available as of today. Existing portals are still accessible, and the transition to this new portal may be done at will.
The change of branding on existing capabilities is indicative of the importance Microsoft is giving to new capability launches, like those of Verified ID and Permissions Management; they carry the theme of “securing access to everything for everyone”. Verified ID allows enterprises to handle identities from external identity providers (IdPs) while still maintaining trust in the individual, embracing the “everyone” while Permissions Management spans the “everything” of multi-cloud.
This launch is cognizant of the changing security and collaborative environment, where identity plays a major role in facilitating secure and smooth interactions.