Microsoft Entra: Revolutionizing Identity & Access Management

Microsoft Entra: Revolutionizing Identity & Access Management

Many of our customers are trying to understand what Microsoft Entra is. Many have heard terms such as Microsoft Entra Permissions Management or Microsoft Entra Workload Identities. In this short article, I will explain what Microsoft Entra Products are.

Microsoft has introduced a new product family called Microsoft Entra, which encompasses its identity and access capabilities. Entra includes Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), Cloud Infrastructure Entitlement Management (CIEM), and decentralized identity. The aim is to provide secure access to everything for everyone through identity and access management, cloud infrastructure entitlement management, and identity verification.

In a hyperconnected world, trust and security have become crucial. Microsoft Entra aims to act as a trust fabric for the entire digital ecosystem, protecting any user’s access to apps and resources and securing and verifying every identity across hybrid and multi-cloud environments. The product family will also discover and govern permissions in multi-cloud environments and simplify user experiences with real-time intelligent access decisions.

The following are the products that compose the Microsoft Entra Family of products:

  • Microsoft Azure Activity Directory: Most of us should be familiar with the Microsoft AAD. It is a cloud-based identity and access management service that helps organizations manage and secure user access to applications and resources. It acts as a central hub for user identity management, enabling single sign-on (SSO) across multiple applications, multi-factor authentication (MFA), and conditional access policies to ensure secure access. Azure AD simplifies user management by offering features such as self-service password reset, device management, and integration with on-premises Active Directory environments. With Azure AD, organizations can manage internal and external users, including employees, partners, and customers, streamlining access control and improving overall security.
  • Microsoft Entra Permissions Management: Microsoft Entra Permissions Management is a Cloud Infrastructure Entitlement Management (CIEM) solution that helps organizations manage and enforce the principle of least privilege across their multi-cloud environments. It provides comprehensive visibility into permissions for all identities, including users and workloads, as well as their actions and resources across public cloud platforms such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, and Google Cloud Platform. Entra Permissions Management enables organizations to detect, right-size, and monitor permissions by offering insights into unused and excessive permissions, reducing their attack surface and mitigating the risk of data breaches. This solution simplifies the management of permissions and access controls, ensuring a consistent and secure experience for identity and security teams in a multi-cloud setting.
  • Microsoft Entra Verified ID: Microsoft Entra Verified ID is a product offering based on decentralized identity standards, aiming to enable secure digital interactions while respecting privacy. It allows individuals and organizations to control what information they share, when they share it, with whom they share it, and, when necessary, to revoke access. Verified ID implements industry standards to make portable, self-owned identity possible, showcasing Microsoft’s commitment to an open, trustworthy, interoperable, and standards-based decentralized identity future. Decentralized identity creates numerous potential scenarios that can improve efficiency and trust in various aspects of life, such as business transactions, background checks, and healthcare. Microsoft Entra Verified ID promotes secure and private interactions, empowering users to take control of their digital identity and share their data more privacy-consciously.
  • Microsoft Entra Workload Identities: Microsoft Entra Workload Identities is a feature that extends the reach of access control and risk detection capabilities within Azure Active Directory to cover applications and services hosted in the cloud. It allows organizations to securely assign and manage identities for any app or service hosted in Azure AD, enabling more granular control over access rights and a more consistent security posture across their digital ecosystem. By integrating workload identities into the Microsoft Entra suite, customers can better manage and govern access permissions and mitigate risks associated with unauthorized access. This feature enhances security and simplifies the process of implementing and managing access controls for applications and services within multi-cloud environments.
  • Microsoft Entra Identity Governance: Microsoft Entra Identity Governance is a solution that addresses the challenges associated with provisioning and managing access rights for users, such as employees and partners, within an organization. It automates identity lifecycle management processes for onboarding and offboarding users, streamlining the assignment and management of access rights and monitoring and tracking access as user attributes change. By implementing Identity Governance, organizations can improve IT and individual productivity, reducing delays in granting access to new employees and guest users. This solution also helps maintain a smoothly functioning supply chain. It enforces formal or automated processes for reprovisioning or deactivating users’ accounts when their roles change or they leave the organization, enhancing overall security and compliance.

The Microsoft Entra family of products delivers comprehensive identity and access management solutions for organizations operating in a hyperconnected world. By encompassing Azure Active Directory, Entra Permissions Management, Entra Verified ID, Workload Identities, and Identity Governance, Microsoft Entra addresses a wide range of security and access needs across multi-cloud environments.

Azure Active Directory is the backbone for user identity management, providing single sign-on, multi-factor authentication, and conditional access. Entra Permissions Management offers a Cloud Infrastructure Entitlement Management solution to enforce the principle of least privilege and manage permissions across public cloud platforms. Entra Verified ID enables secure, privacy-focused digital interactions based on decentralized identity standards. At the same time, Workload Identities extend access control and risk detection capabilities to applications and services hosted in Azure AD.

Lastly, Identity Governance automates identity lifecycle management processes for onboarding, offboarding, and managing user access rights, improving overall security and compliance. By offering a comprehensive and integrated suite of products, Microsoft Entra empowers organizations to maintain secure access, streamline identity management, and protect data across their entire digital ecosystem.



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