Gartner Hype Cycle 2017: Externalized Authorization Management is Maturing

Oren Harel
July 24, 2017

The Gartner Hype Cycle report is the most viewed analyst report after Magic Quadrant, and for a good reason. While The Magic Quadrant looks closely at individual vendors, the Hype Cycle is focused on cutting-edge technologies and is most valuable when it comes to understanding the application of a specific technology type.

A Hype Cycle is a great way to cut through the hype made about certain technologies and shows, graphically, where a technology is in terms of its maturity and application in real-world scenarios. It is an excellent way to, at-a-glance, see where a technology of interest is, in terms of its development in the market and readiness for actual implementation in an enterprise.

Externalized Authorization Management Moves up to the middle of IAM Hype Cycle

The Gartner Hype Cycle on Identity and Access Management Technologies, 2017, is a detailed perspective on the maturity of the IAM space. It shows, for example, that drivers such as the protocols, UMA, SCIM, and OpenID Connect, have been behind innovative advances in IAM.

Some of the other interesting areas in this year’s Hype Cycle for IAM are seen in the middle stages of the cycle. The “Trough of Disillusionment” although sounding somewhat negative, is, in fact, a very crucial stage in the Hype Cycle, crystallizing technological approaches.

This part of the cycle represents innovative and important technological advances, often taken up by early adopters and tested out for the robustness of the approach. Vendors who supply technologies that fit into this area, and who are successful in the development of those technologies, will be an important part of the overall IAM solution set going forward.

One such area outlined in the Hype Cycle is “Externalized Authorization Management” (EAM). Externalized Authorization Management offers a more granular way to manage access within an organization. It is a much needed innovative solution when it comes to detangling enterprise authorizations.

Gartner has placed this technology part-way through the Hype Cycle; compared to 2016, EAM is now moving towards the “Slope of Enlightenment” stage of the cycle, where companies who take-up the technology start to feel the benefits of the new approach. In terms of those benefits, Externalized Authorization Management offers a much more agile way to provide authorization across the expanded enterprise; moving away from static, roles-based controls, using centralized multi-system management of authorization.

In terms of the need for Externalized Authorization Management technology, Gartner stresses that the particular strengths of the EAM technology lie in its very architecture that is well suited for granular control of application and data access. Due to its’ granularity EAM is performing exceptionally well when it comes to flexibility of authorization, resulting in better access control, audit and compliance.

The Time Is Now for Externalized Authorization Management

The Gartner Hype Cycle report for IAM is an important advisory for decision makers when choosing products to implement a modern IAM system. Designing an IAM framework for your organization can be a complicated task.

IAM is now central to many aspects of a business, covering areas as diverse as security and customer engagement. Getting the right tools in place, that are flexible enough to cope with the variety of use cases that modern IAM systems need to cover, requires a good guide.

Authorization is one of the technology areas that are evolving new techniques to manage these new requirements. According to Gartner, EAM integrations with enterprise software are becoming more widely available, increasing the feasibility of adopting EAM solutions.

Using EAM solutions provides an enterprise with a more agile way of dealing with authorization complexities. In doing so, it opens up the ability for a company to implement IAM frameworks that work across a myriad of situations, allowing your organization to thrive within a highly competitive digital economy.

Although Gartner’s main focus for the Hype Cycle report is technology, and not vendor recommendations per se, the report points to key vendors in the specified technology area. In this year’s Hype Cycle report for Identity and Access Management Technologies, Gartner recognizes PlainID as one of the key vendors in the Externalized Authorization Management area.

This is not the first time PlainID has been recognized by Gartner. Recently, PlainID was also identified as a key Dynamic Authorization Management vendor in the report “Improving Runtime Authorization” by Gartner analyst, Homan Farahmand. In addition to advanced analytic tools that assist in a smoother start with policies, PlainID’s solution uses graph-based technology to support and optimize dynamic decisions required for managing authorization access controls.  


*Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

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