RMF Control AC-5: Separation of Duties is a cybersecurity control that helps to protect information systems by preventing any one individual from having too much power or control. This control is important because it can help to prevent fraud, errors, and malicious activity.
Separation of Duties Requirements
The RMF Control AC-5: Separation of Duties requirements are specified in NIST Special Publication 800-53, Revision 5. The requirements state that the organization must:
- Separate critical information system development, support, and operations duties into distinct jobs so that no single individual can perform all of the steps necessary to complete a critical operation;
- Establish and document separation of duties requirements for information systems;
- Assign information system accounts and permissions in accordance with the separation of duties requirements; and
- Monitor and audit information system usage to identify and respond to violations of separation of duties requirements.
Separation of Duties Best Practices
In addition to the RMF Control AC-5: Separation of Duties requirements, there are a number of best practices that organizations can follow to improve their separation of duties posture. These best practices include:
- Implementing a role-based access control (RBAC) system to manage user access to information systems and data. RBAC systems allow organizations to assign users to roles, and then grant permissions to those roles. This can help to simplify separation of duties and reduce the risk of unauthorized access.
- Using a least privilege model to grant users only the access they need to perform their job duties. This can help to reduce the risk of accidental or malicious misuse of access privileges.
- Regularly reviewing separation of duties requirements and user access permissions to ensure that they are still appropriate and effective.
- Educating users on the importance of separation of duties and how to comply with the organization’s requirements.
RMF Control AC-5: Separation of Duties is an important cybersecurity control that helps to protect information systems by preventing any one individual from having too much power or control. By following the RMF Control AC-5: Separation of Duties requirements and best practices, organizations can help to reduce the risk of fraud, errors, and malicious activity.
Here are some additional tips for implementing and enforcing separation of duties:
- Use a job rotation program to reduce the risk of any one individual becoming too familiar with a particular system or process.
- Implement dual controls for critical operations, such as requiring two people to sign off on all financial transactions.
- Use a security information and event management (SIEM) system to monitor and audit user activity for suspicious behavior.
By following these tips, organizations can help to ensure that their information systems are protected from unauthorized access and misuse.