Active Directory is a tool to simplify identity services in the enterprise and provide ease to the system administrators, but lack of visibility into AD operations gives rise to significant pain points. It becomes pretty frustrating not to understand who made a change in Active Directory and what that change was. Admins have to spend hours understanding the root cause of why a Group Policy Object is in a warning state. In addition, if excessive privilege is shared in an environment, and Domain Admin rights are assigned to more users, it leads to more confusion on who did what in Active Directory. That’s why not auditing the Active Directory environment puts organizations at risk from an operational and legal perspective.
Why is it important to audit AD?
Auditing Active Directory reduces security risks by identifying and mitigating alarming conditions like deeply nested groups and precisely assigned permissions that unauthorized users can exploit to access the company’s network resources.
Here are just a few reasons why it’s essential to audit Active Directory:
- System Status: Active Directory has no built-in alerting tools to alert on the health of the system. If any function in AD is degraded, the admin might not find out until the end-users report the issue. Proactive monitoring of the system’s health provides real-time alerting to take action before it impacts the users.
- Suspicious Activity: Malware actors are often hiding in an environment for months before the outbreak of a cyberattack. Regularly auditing the Active Directory environment gives an outstanding chance to warn about suspicious activity before a full-blown attack.
- Compliance: For some organizations, it’s now the law too must audit Active Directory services. For example, according to US regulations, such as SOX 404, organizations must implement mechanisms to ensure that application errors are identified and corrected.
Benefits of Using Auditing Solutions for Active Directory
1. Real-time auditing and alerting
Real-time auditing solutions collect and integrate “who, what, when, and where” information as changes happen. Alerting features empowers to immediately react and remediate unusual changes before compliance is endangered or security risks escalate. This capability enhances Active Directory security.
2. Regular Data Backups
One of the critical benefits of the Active Directory auditing solution is the ability to recover from modifications made at any point in time rapidly. The continuous backup ability allows granular rollback of specific changes, reducing the impact of a recovery event.
3. Audit several objects or attributes
For any organization, time is money, and efficient auditing and data collection are a priority. Active Directory auditing solutions allow the audit of numerous objects or attributes by default without requiring additional manual auditing.
Have a complete overview of User Logon events, Domain Policy changes, and User, Group, and assets management through audit reports. These reports effectively address security, compliance, and audit requirements like HIPAA, SOX, PCI, and GLBA.
5. Central management console
A single, unifying management console for all Active Directory activity allows to analyze and control the AD environment from one access point and enables to be focused and efficient. It also gives the ability to extend auditing to other platforms, such as SQL, Exchange, and File Systems.
Recommendation for Top-notch Active Directory Auditing Tools
Quest Change Auditor gives a complete, real-time IT auditing and security threat monitoring on user and administrator changes for Microsoft Active Directory, Azure AD, Office 365, and Exchange. It also tracks user activity for logons, authentications, and critical services across the network to boost threat detection and security monitoring through a central console and minimize the need and complexity.
ManageEngine AD Audit Plus provides a reliable view of Active Directory changes, correlating information and comparing states in real-time to ensure that no events go unnoticed. It also features point-in-time recovery to quickly revert Active Directory to a previous state when necessary and make undoing a mass security group change process relatively easy. This comprehensive Active Directory auditing solution provides complete visibility into changes made in AD. In addition to visibility and efficiency, auditing AD Audit Plus assist in maintaining compliance in many industries.
Are you looking for more Help with AD Audit services?
As a leading Swiss IT consultancy company, Kidan provides top-class consultation services by recognizing the importance of helping businesses with the Active Directory implementations and adapting the secure practices for better ROI.
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