IT organizations all over the world are moving their IT infrastructure to the cloud. For many of those organizations, the goal is to shift the majority of their on-prem Microsoft® infrastructure to Office 365®. Yet, Active Directory® (AD) – Microsoft’s directory service platform – is still firmly grounded on-prem, which is why many cloud-forward IT organizations ask us if it’s possible to integrate Office 365 with cloud identity and access management.
The short answer is that it is possible to integrate Office 365 with cloud identity and access management when you leverage JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service®. The long answer is what will be discussed in this blog. Let’s begin with an outline of Microsoft’s traditional on-prem approach in order to reveal the benefits of a cloud IAM alternative.
Traditional Identity and Access Management
Historically, the IAM solution for IT organizations has been AD – Microsoft’s on-prem legacy directory service solution. AD was released around the turn of the century when the vast majority of IT infrastructure was still on-prem and Windows-based. As such, IT admins simply defaulted to an on-prem IAM platform from Microsoft to complement their existing infrastructure.
Of course, AD worked well in this type of environment in which everything was on-prem and Windows-based. However, as organizations make the leap to Office 365, IT admins tend to prefer a cloud based IAM infrastructure to match.
One option that is often discussed is moving from AD to Azure Active Directory®. The challenge with this approach is that Azure AD is not the cloud replacement to AD, but rather a complement to existing AD infrastructure on-prem. Consequently, IT organizations need to keep their AD server on-prem and connect it to Azure AD, which cannot serve as a standalone solution.
That doesn’t achieve the goal of moving on-prem IAM to the cloud. Further, AD and Azure AD limit the organization to Microsoft technology. Of course, that wouldn’t be a problem if IT wanted to “party like it’s 1999,” but IT admins know that’s not how the world works anymore.
Today, Windows-based devices are the minority in most IT organizations, and Mac and Linux (Read more...)
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from JumpCloud authored by Vince Lujan. Read the original post at: https://jumpcloud.com/blog/integrate-office-365-with-cloud-identity-and-access-management-iam/