Identity Alone Won’t Save Us: The TSA Paradigm and MGM’s Hack

Identity Alone Won't Save Us: The TSA Paradigm and MGM's Hack

November 7, 2023 at 10:04AM

The recent cyberattack on MGM Resorts resulted in widespread outages and the compromise of various systems, such as slot machines and payment systems. The attack highlighted the importance of properly managing access and authentication controls. Simply adding more identity products is not the solution. Instead, organizations should focus on authentication, access controls, and continuous verification. Implementing a zero-trust architecture model and multifactor authentication can help prevent unauthorized access. Improving authorization and access controls is crucial in combating sophisticated threats in the cybersecurity landscape.

Key Takeaways from the Meeting Notes:

1. The recent cyberattack on MGM Resorts highlighted the importance of understanding and managing access and authentication controls in the cybersecurity industry.
2. The hackers gained access through social engineering, bypassing identity products and compromising legitimate identities.
3. Simply adding more identity products is not the solution to preventing attacks. Organizations need to focus on proper authentication and access controls alongside identity.
4. Drawing an analogy from airport security, organizations should implement a robust security checkpoint or policy enforcement point to ensure rigorous checks before granting direct access to sensitive resources.
5. The TSA’s three-step protocol can be translated to the enterprise digital realm, involving user authentication, device integrity checks, and continuous verification for every request to access resources.
6. MGM’s shortcoming was that it performed identity verification but overlooked subsequent phases such as device integrity checks and continuous verification.
7. Implementing a zero-trust architecture model and replacing legacy technology with a zero-trust secure access service edge solution can provide better access and authorization controls.
8. Standardized, multifactor authentication should be implemented alongside passwords for improved identification control.
9. To secure digital landscapes against sophisticated threats, organizations need to update legacy technologies and improve authorization and access controls, similar to the multilayered security approach seen at airports.

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