4 de jun de 2024

Creating balance with preapproved access

Discover how preapproved access works and learn more about its applications, benefits, and challenges.

  • Connect and support people
  • Maintaining IT security is more important than ever. But with security comes the need for access — access to the systems, data, and resources employees need to do their jobs effectively. Preapproved access can help your business to strike a balance between security and access.

    In this article:

    What is preapproved access?

    Giving people access to sensitive resources creates security risks. The greater the number of people that have access, the greater the risk of a breach. 

    However, from a business perspective, simply denying all employees access to sensitive resources is not a solution. Some employees need access to sensitive resources to complete their tasks. For example, IT teams need privileged access because they manage IT infrastructure. Similarly, finance teams need access to company financial records. 

    Therefore, the problem is ensuring that only the right people have access. 

    Preapproved access solves this problem by granting access to resources based on the principle of least privilege

    The principle of least privilege means that employees should only be given the minimum level of access needed to perform their tasks. For instance, an employee working in sales would not be given access to HR systems because they don’t need access to do their job.  

    Guided by the principle of least privilege, IT teams can set up predefined rules and permissions based on employee roles and responsibilities. Once set up, these permissions give employees preapproved access to the resources they need while minimizing the risk of a data breach. 

    In the case of TeamViewer, Conditional Access lets IT managers maintain company-wide oversight of TeamViewer access and usage from a single location.

    What are some examples of preapproved access?

    IT support 

    IT support teams often use pre-approved access to give remote assistance to users experiencing technical problems. With pre-approved access, users can provide IT technicians permission to connect to their devices whenever help is needed, without waiting for individual approval requests. This streamlines the support process and reduces downtime.

    Remote monitoring and maintenance

    Managed service providers (MSPs) and IT administrators use preapproved access for remote monitoring and maintenance of client systems and networks. 

    By configuring access permissions, clients can authorize their MSPs or IT providers to remotely access their devices for routine maintenance tasks, software updates, and troubleshooting. This ensures proactive management of IT infrastructure without disrupting client workflows.

    Access to electronic health records

    Healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses, and administrative staff, often need access to electronic health records to review patient histories and record treatments. Preapproved access allows authorized staff to log in to the electronic health records system without needing additional approval for each access attempt.

    What are the benefits of preapproved access?

    Enhanced efficiency

    Manually managing access requests is inefficient. Typically, users have to fill out a form or write an email and then wait to be granted access. Multiply this across an organization and it's easy to see how it can slow down productivity.

    Preapproved access removes this inefficiency by giving employees instant access to the resources they need.

    For example, a software developer might need access to a development server to test a new feature. Without preapproved access, the developer would have to submit a request and wait for approval before they can get to work.

    With preapproved access, the developer is given access to the server as part of their standard permissions, meaning they can log in and get to work immediately. This speeds up the development process and helps create a culture of agility.

    Preapproved access also speeds up the onboarding of new team members. When new employee permissions are set ahead of time it saves them from submitting numerous access requests. Similarly, as roles change within your company, preapproved access can be easily adjusted to reflect new permissions. 

    Improved security

    Security breaches are something every business wants to prevent. Unauthorized access to sensitive data can lead to significant financial loss, reputational damage, and legal trouble.

    Preapproved access improves cybersecurity by ensuring that only those with legitimate reasons and proper permissions can access sensitive resources. By limiting access to a ‘need-to-know basis’, preapproved access reduces the risk of data breaches from both inside and outside your company.

    For example, a marketing manager with access to a company CRM might be given preapproved access that gives them access to only the specific features and data they need to perform their job. By limiting the marketing manager’s access to only what they need, the IT department reduces the risk of data leaks.

    Simplified compliance

    Maintaining compliance is becoming more complex. From GDPR to HIPAA, organizations of all sizes have to comply with an increasing number of rules and regulations.

    Preapproved access simplifies the compliance process by providing clear documentation of who accessed what and when. This can help your organization to demonstrate compliance during audits and improve accountability. 

    For example, healthcare organizations have to comply with HIPAA regulations to protect patient privacy. By implementing preapproved access controls, healthcare organizations can ensure that only authorized healthcare professionals have access to patient records and sensitive medical information. 

    What are the challenges of preapproved access?

    Securing privileged access accounts

    74% of data breaches start with privileged credential abuse. If you ignore or fail to manage the security risks created by granting privileged access, you are putting yourself and your company at significant risk.

    Some of the major risks include:


    Privileged access accounts are increasingly becoming targets for cyberattacks. Cybercriminals deliberately target these accounts because they know they will likely be a gateway to sensitive information.

    A Verizon report found that C-level executives were twelve times more likely to be the target of social incidents and nine times more likely to be the target of social breaches than in years past.

    Misuse of privileged access

    Misuse occurs when employees with privileged access do not undertake proper cybersecurity measures. For example, they might use their high-level access account to complete daily tasks, increasing the risk of a cyberbreach.

    Another example of misuse is when privileged account holders grant elevated access to other users. When not monitored closely, this can quickly lead to many users with access rights beyond what they need.

    Privilege creep 

    Privilege creep refers to a situation where an employee gradually accumulates access rights beyond what they need to do their job. It often happens when an employee changes jobs within their company. When transitioning into a new role, they are granted new privileges. However, those given in their previous role are often not reviewed or revoked.

    Without strict oversight, it’s easy to see how an employee who has moved two or three times within a company could accumulate access privileges far beyond what they need in their current role.

    Internal threats

    Ill-intentioned employees with privileged access can easily cause serious harm — like wiping databases or installing malware on critical systems. According to the 2022 Cost of Insider Threats Global Report, companies spend US $648,000 on average to recover from a cyber incident caused by an insider threat.

    Managing complexity

    For companies managing a rapidly increasing number of applications and resources, it can be hard to keep track of permissions. Add in employee turnover, role changes, and ad-hoc access requests, and it becomes even more complex.

    Managing the challenges of preapproved access 

    To reduce the risk of cybersecurity threats, users with privileged access should get a separate set of non-privileged credentials to use for daily tasks. Training should also be provided to ensure employees understand the consequences of improper use of their credentials.

    To prevent privilege creep, reduce the impact of internal threats, and manage complexity, companies must maintain a watchful eye on who has access to what. Visibility and a consistent review process allow IT teams to manage permissions when, for example, an employee changes roles or leaves the company.


    By implementing preapproved access, you can balance access with security, empowering employees to perform their roles effectively while safeguarding sensitive information.

    However, preapproved access is not a set-and-forget. Alongside it, you should maintain vigilant oversight of permissions and implement proactive measures, such as employee training on cybersecurity practices. This will put you in a good position to get the most from preapproved access.

    TeamViewer preapproved access

    With TeamViewer Conditional Access, IT and security managers can maintain company-wide oversight of TeamViewer access and usage from a single location.