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Overview of Identity Administration

Identity Administration is the ability for designated individuals to perform user, group, shared folder, SharePoint, computer and other object management tasks in a controlled manner using the Web interface and workflows of EmpowerID. Which objects a person may see and what management tasks they may perform against those objects is controlled by EmpowerID's real-time RBAC / ABAC hybrid security model. EmpowerID allows controlled Identity Administration through a single interface and security model without requiring delegation of native permissions in the various systems in which the objects they are managing reside. Key to developing an effective Identity Administration strategy involves uncovering the different types of "Personas" in your environment, classifying each by the objects they can see and the actions they can perform against them.

Users using the EmpowerID workflows or API may perform secure management of objects that exist in external systems as well as EmpowerID. Examples of external objects are Azure AD User Accounts, SAP Roles, File Shares, SharePoint sites, etc. Users may also manage objects that only exist in EmpowerID: people, management roles, Business Roles, etc. In both cases, a real-time authorization engine leveraging RBAC and ABAC security controls who may manage which objects and which actions or tasks they may perform against those objects. The system also handles logging, automatic approval routing, and workflow task generation in the event a user tries an action they are not authorized to perform.

The bottom tier of the 3-tiered EmpowerID RBAC model are the Access Levels which are EmpowerID's Technical Roles. Access Levels define which actions (operations), and which native system permissions (rights), the recipient of the Access Level would be authorized to perform for any resources for which they have that Access Level. Access Levels can be directly assigned to people but most often are assigned to RBAC Actors in one of the higher tiers (i.e. Business Roles and Locations, Management Roles, etc.)

Operations are protected bits of code that are executed to perform these tasks in EmpowerID workflows or via its API. Operations can also be arbitrary, not performing any action, just serving as a placeholder for applications to query and determine access.

Rights are representations of actual permissions used in an external system which can be granted in EmpowerID via Access Level assignments. The EmpowerID enforcement engine pushes these permissions out into the external system on schedule for any user to which they have been granted. Examples of rights include NTFS permissions for shared folders and mailbox ACLs in Microsoft Exchange.

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