What Is Zero Trust? (And How Does It Apply To Business Intelligence)

zero trust


Zero trust is a great way to boost security in your business.

Before being permitted or keeping access to applications and data, all users, whether inside or outside the organization’s network, must be verified, authorized, and continually evaluated for security configuration and posture.

Zero Trust presupposes there is no distinct network edge; networks can be local, cloud-based, or a mix of the two, with resources and workers located anywhere. Zero trust can be highly beneficial for applications and business intelligence, but few understand the core of how zero trust works.

This guide will explain what Zero Trust means, how it applies to business intelligence, and how Yurbi can help with a zero trust environment.

What is Zero Trust?

The Zero Trust (ZT) security framework establishes how users inside and outside an organization must be authenticated. At a high level, this entails assessing when and how users can access programs and data regularly. ZT aspires to eliminate perimeter-based protection techniques in favor of a unified approach for trusted access, regardless of where users come from.

Many businesses are investing heavily in zero-trust efforts. Several excellent public case studies are available, like Microsoft’s project and Google’s BeyondCorp program, both of which focused on enabling safe remote access for employees without using a VPN. Microsoft and Google are also pioneering a new trend: passwordless access.

So, what role do passwords play in the Zero-Trust philosophy? Passwords are shared, stolen, reused, and replayed regularly. They’re a hacker’s favorite target, and categories of vendor goods exist to compensate for password flaws. While passwords are not the sole source of lost trust, they are unquestionably the most costly. You’re probably already using various security solutions if you’re an app developer.

Your trust algorithm is informed by various tools, including identity providers, access control, and threat intelligence, which are integrated to inform your trust algorithm. The issue with most businesses’ implementations of this paradigm is that they still rely primarily on passwords and shared secrets. This is where the concept of zero trust comes into play.

Some examples of a zero trust approach to securing applications include securing logins with two-factor authentication, not allowing the sharing of users, transparent data encryption (also known as TDE), password hash and encryption, and SSL.

How Zero Trust Works

Zero Trust is a methodology for preserving infrastructure and data in today’s digital transition. It’s the only tool that addresses today’s business challenges, such as remote worker security, hybrid cloud environments, and ransomware threats.

While many vendors have sought to define Zero Trust on their own, several industry standards can assist you in aligning Zero Trust with your business.

This framework’s implementation combines advanced technologies like risk-based multi-factor authentication, identity protection, next-generation endpoint security, and reliable cloud workload software to verify a user’s or system’s identity properly, consider access at the time, and maintain system security.

Before assets and endpoints connect to apps, they must be encrypted, emails must be secured, and the cleanliness of assets and endpoints must be verified.

Zero Trust has superseded traditional network security, which followed the “trust but verified” method. The traditional system automatically trusted users and endpoints within the company’s perimeter, exposing the company to hostile internal actors and valid credentials stolen by criminals, providing unauthorized accounts significant access once inside.

With the cloud migration of corporate transformation initiatives and the acceleration of a distributed work environment, this paradigm became outmoded due to the pandemic that began in 2020.

As a result, enterprises must constantly monitor and check that users and their devices have the appropriate access and attributes. It also necessitates implementing a policy that considers the user’s and device’s risk, as well as any compliance or other requirements that must be considered before approving the transaction.

It necessitates the organization’s knowledge of all service and privileged accounts and the ability to impose restrictions on what and where they connect. Because threats and user properties are all subject to change, a one-time validation will not suffice.

As a result, businesses must ensure that all access requests are thoroughly reviewed before granting access to any corporate or cloud assets.

How This Applies to Business Intelligence

Think about how important security is in the context of business intelligence.

You have to ensure information gets to the right people, and a BI tool will have a direct connection and is a conduit between your data and the stakeholders or users who need them.

Your BI Tool must support features that support a zero-trust environment. Unfortunately, many BI tools just connect to the data and let you write raw SQL code and exploit the data.

The Benefits You Can Enjoy

A few benefits of zero trust include:

  • There is less vulnerability. The Zero Trust approach, if implemented, improves the company’s security, particularly against in-network lateral attacks that could arise under a different security paradigm.
  • User identity and access policies that are strict. Zero Trust necessitates strict user management within the network for individual accounts to be more secure, making the entire network more secure.

    Using multi-factor authentication or biometrics instead of passwords is a fantastic approach to keep accounts secure. Then, thanks to user categorization, individuals can only be given access to data and accounts required for their specific work tasks.

  • Data segmentation that is smart. You wouldn’t have one large pool of data that all users could access in a Zero Trust approach. Data can be segmented by kind, sensitivity, and purpose for a more secure arrangement. Critical or sensitive data is safeguarded, and attack surfaces are decreased.

The Challenges You Must Note

Some challenges of zero trust include:

  • Setting up takes time and effort. Because the network must continue functioning during the transition, reorganizing policies inside an existing network might be tricky. It’s often easier to start again and develop a new network from the ground up. If legacy systems are incompatible with the Zero Trust architecture, it will be required to start over.
  • There are more devices to keep track of. In today’s workplace, there are not only many types of users but also various types of equipment for each of them. Different gadgets may have unique attributes and communication methods that must be monitored and secured.

How Can Yurbi Help?

Without a doubt, a zero-trust environment is something that many businesses would love to have in their setups.

With the security and safety of critical data and other relevant information that your company needs to thrive and prosper, you need a business intelligence tool to help you achieve that without worrying about other security issues.

That’s where Yurbi enters the scene. Wait, what is Yurbi?

Yurbi is a highly-functional business intelligence tool that allows you to execute your operations in a zero-trust environment. Like a zero-trust environment, Yurbi prioritizes data security and safety with its various features.

A few of the features built into Yurbi to assist with a Zero Trust environment:

  • Robust data-level/tenant-level security enforcement. Yurbi allows you to provision users and unlike other BI tools which may bring copy or clone data in your databases and then apply tenant security, Yurbi modifies the database queries to only extract data relevant to the originating user.
  • Cisco Duo two-factor authentication. Currently, Yurbi supports Cisco Duo 2FA, but we have SAML and other options on the roadmap. Two-factor authentication provides a robust tool to verify users.
  • Reduced exposure of passwords. Any passwords that Yurbi stores for users or data sources are encrypted with the database. More importantly, Yurbi never displays a password in its interface, so Yurbi never decrypts the password for display, which can open up potential interceptions of the password.
  • Session Time Out. Yurbi utilizes a session token approach to logins. Once a user authenticates, they are granted a session token, which times out by default with no activity. Should this session token be intercepted after the timeout, it will no longer be useful for accessing any data.

    A session token can only be used by one user at a time, so if someone did use an active session token, it would revoke access to the other session, which indirectly will cause them to re-login or realize that someone else is using their session on another device.

    Access to the Yurbi API also relies on a perishable session token, and not a dedicated API key which can be exploited.

  • Encrypted Communications. Yurbi fully supports (and recommends) the use of SSL encryption for any web traffic. Yurbi also can support encrypted traffic between Yurbi and databases. And database technologies like transparent data encryption work with no problem. For API endpoint reporting, Yurbi supports oAuth2 and many secure access methods.
  • Data governance and auditing. Yurbi also logs all users that log in, execute reports, even print or export data. You can even track SQL queries at the user-level. You have a lot of additional knowledge to track down exactly how users are accessing and using data.

So if a hacker decides to sneak inside your business, it won’t easily succeed, thanks to Yurbi’s eagle-eyed approach to data security. And unlike other enterprise BI tools that have similar features, Yurbi’s affordable pricing options geared towards small and medium enterprises.

Our talk ends here, and we invite you to see these things unfold in front of you. Feel free to reach out to us, either through a meeting or by availing of our free live demo session with our team of Yurbi experts.

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