Why Identity and Access Management is Vital to Successful M&A
Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are fundamental in todays’ business environment, where buying and selling, growing and moving organizations is everyday practice. But M&A presents significant challenges to the companies’ IT. A strong and automated identity management and access governance process can not only speed up the integration or separation of a company, but also lead to faster synergy benefits and support the (new) business strategy.
September 2017: M&A is about increasing shareholder value, increasing efficiency, and finding synergies, but the integration of two IT systems into each other is often tricky. A rapid integration of the IT environments and cultures requires good communication and solid processes.
The M&A threat
Identity and access management assists the M&A process from start to finish, from due diligence to integration. Whilst few take a deep look at the cybersecurity risk during M&A, such as auditing the other company and evaluating the cybersecurity risk profile, even fewer consider the threat M&A in itself poses. The often chaotic time poses an opportunity for externals to hack into systems or internals unhappy about the new situation to take advantage of openings in the systems.
A strong and automated identity management and access governance system can turn a threat into a possibility. Having solid processes set up, means organizations can get employees up and working much quicker, by being able to grant access to relevant systems and applications with proper rights.
Complex challenges for the IT teams
New statistics show that M&A activity continues to be on the rise, year on year outpacing the previous year. Cross-border transactions, amongst others, makes it even more complex for the security teams, who need to be on top of everything from provisioning, to identity creation, and governance to temporary workers and contractors. These types of transactions often lead to both a shift in and a reduction of the workforce, also a job for identity and access governance. A lack of control of identities is a known flaw in M&A situations, which provide an opportunity for cyber criminals. While one of the companies may have good processes and knowledge of who has access to what, where and why, the other company may not have this overview.
Having an overview of your identities, all your identities, is critical – especially when you have two companies merging – otherwise they are that much more difficult to protect. Also vital for the merger processes is having solid policies in place, to avoid uncontrolled situations. Thinking IAM into the M&A scenario from the outset can not only assist and speed-up the deal integration, but also help protect the organization at a time of increased vulnerability.
Omada’s solution can help protect and prepare your company for M&A. Read more here and watch out for an interview with Omada Executive Vice President Christian Stendevad about Identity and Access Management in M&A scenarios next week.