Best IAM Tools for 2024: Secure Identity and Access Management

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As cyber threats become increasingly sophisticated, identity and access management (IAM) is critical for enterprises to secure their users, systems, and sensitive data. However, with a plethora of tools promising to streamline IAM, determining the right approach for an organization’s needs can be challenging.

We recently released a first-of-its-kind global report on the identity attack surface, jointly prepared by Silverfort and Osterman Research – The State of the Identity Attack Surface: Insights into Critical Security Gaps.

The report provides two key insights for security stakeholders:

  1. Identity is a highly targeted attack surface with compromised user credentials serving as the main attack vector.
  2. Security controls of this attack surface are poorly implemented in most organizations, leaving them at critical risk.

What is Identity and Access Management (IAM)?

IAM enables the right individuals to access the right resources at the right times for the right reasons. IAM tools provide authentication, authorization, and identity governance for an organization’s digital assets, including data, applications, infrastructure, and connected devices.

It consists of three components: authentication, authorization, and identity governance. Authentication verifies a user’s identity, authorization determines their access privileges, and identity governance enforces compliance.

Together, these components grant employees, partners, and customers appropriate access to organizational resources while reducing the risks of data breaches and cyber threats. Effective IAM is crucial for security and compliance.

IAM presents a significant challenge for enterprises with many resources, users, and access requirements. Enterprise IAM tools streamline and govern identity and access across an organization. Key features include:

  • Centralized user directory to manage employee and non-employee credentials in one place.
  • Role-based access controls (RBAC) to minimize excessive permissions and ensure least privilege access.
  • Workflow automation to approve, certify, and revoke access requests and access privileges according to defined policies.
  • Audit reporting and analytics to monitor access, detect anomalies, and generate insights for risk mitigation.
  • Integration with IT infrastructure and security tools to seamless IAM experience across domains.
  • Scalability to handle tens of millions of identities, credentials, and access points without impacting performance or user experience.
  • Flexible deployment to allow integration with existing infrastructure, including on-prem, cloud-based, and hybrid environments.

The Identity Attack Surface and the Need for IAM Tools

The identity attack surface includes all the organizational resources that can be accessed with user credentials. Therefore, attackers that possess user credentials will be able to use them for malicious access, account takeover, lateral movement, and ransomware spread.

As cloud services, blockchain, IoT, and AI continue to grow in use, and cyber threats grow more sophisticated, IAM tools are becoming increasingly important. They enable organizations to effectively monitor and control authentication  and authorization processes, enforce stringent security policies, and keep a vigilant eye on user activities and access patterns. The deployment of IAM tools is crucial to mitigate risks, ensure regulatory compliance, and protect sensitive data.

To address the threat of attackers using compromised credentials for malicious access, IAM solutions need to incorporate a variety of tools and technologies, including multi-factor authentication (MFA), single sign-on (SSO), privileged access management (PAM), and thorough identity governance.

Traditional or manual IAM processes fall short in addressing the sheer volume and complexity of modern networks. This leads to security gaps, operational inefficiencies, and a poor user experience.

The best IAM tools incorporate an automated approach to identity management and security, and comprehensive account visibility. Consequently, IAM has emerged as a top priority for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) and security professionals aiming to fortify their cyber defense mechanisms.

Evaluating the Leading IAM Tools in the Market

Robust IAM is imperative for efficient identity and access management. The current market leaders include:

Microsoft Entra ID

Entra ID offers a comprehensive IAM suite, ideal for organizations deeply embedded in the Microsoft ecosystem. It stands out for its SSO capabilities across multiple Microsoft and third-party applications, enhancing user access management. Its Conditional Access feature allows for detailed access control policies, enhancing security.


Okta is a cloud-based IAM platform with a user-friendly design and extensive pre-built integrations with various applications. Okta is ideal for streamlined access management, offering features like SSO, MFA, and adaptive authentication.

Ping Identity

Ping Identity offers diverse features like SSO, MFA, and identity governance, focusing on granular user access control and strict policy enforcement. Its versatility in supporting various authentication methods enhances its adaptability.

IBM Security Identity and Access Management

IBM’s suite, including IBM Security Access Manager and IBM Identity Governance and Intelligence, is known for its scalability and advanced access control. It is ideally suited for large enterprises with complex IAM requirements, as it combines user authentication, policy enforcement and governance, and managing diverse user bases and regulatory compliance.

ForgeRock Identity Platform

ForgeRock addresses a broad spectrum of identity management needs, including Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM). It’s an optimal choice for organizations aiming to boost customer engagement, allowing seamless management of identities across various channels and easy integration with customer-centric applications.


OneLogin is a cloud-based IAM solution that offers swift deployment. It simplifies integration efforts by providing SSO, MFA, and adaptive authentication, and has a broad range of connectors for third-party applications. It’s ideal for businesses seeking a simple, scalable, and user-friendly IAM option.

SailPoint IdentityNow

SailPoint IdentityNow is ideal for compliance and role-based access control. It facilitates efficient identity management, automates provisioning and deprovisioning, and ensures adherence to compliance standards. It also offers an intuitive interface for complex IAM operations.

Silverfort IAM Integration

Silverfort offers a unified identity protection platform that consolidates security controls across on-prem ,cloud and hybrid environments, and can automatically discover and analyze access attempts and identity threats.

Silverfort’s key feature is its ability to provide full visibility into user and service accounts, and extend security controls such as MFA, conditional access and risk-based authentication policies to legacy on-prem resources.

Silverfort’s unified identity protection platform integrates seamlessly with existing systems and IT infrastructures, including Active Directory (AD), Entra ID, legacy homegrown applications, file shares, and command-line tools. Lastly, Silverfort offers a unified approach that not only provides a consistent, less confusing experience but also means that users don’t have to authenticate multiple times just because they’re accessing resources managed by different IAM tools.

Stop Identity Threats Now