Cmd + Slack

Real-Time Authorization

Real-Time notifications and authorizations in Linux Production for rapid, effective checks and balances.

# Real-Time Authorization in Linux Production Environments

Often, engineers require approval before executing sensitive code changes. The engineer will file a ticket, receive permission to move forward, and execute the command. This process, of course, needs to be incredibly fast—any lag-time impedes productivity and efficiency. It also needs to be traceable for any potential issues with bugs, compliance, or security concerns.

Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. In traditional IT infrastructures, workflows usually look something like this: a system admin needs to make a sensitive change, so they send a request. Then they need to wait until a help desk or security team member approves or denies it. This process is cumbersome, so many organizations avoid the problem by relying on an honor system, which is not secure and can leave critical Linux production environments exposed. Also, these permissions tend to be binary “yes/no” solutions when, in fact, engineering is more nuanced around who has access to what, when they have access, and how important their request is.

Enter Cmd and Slack.

# How Cmd Integrates with Slack

Slack is a very helpful tool for centralizing communications, which is why its name stands for “Searchable Log of All Conversation and Knowledge.”

Cmd adds another layer of internal security for companies using Slack as part of their workflow for engineering teams. With Cmd in place, engineers can make a request to execute a sensitive command in Slack, receive permission via Cmd (if appropriate), and then move forward with their work. On the administrative side, Cmd provides context around the request, allowing the decision-maker to fully understand why the request is being made. This creates a clear system of permissions and a unified audit trail for the future. It also adds systematic checks and balances, all without causing friction in the development process. In most cases, because Cmd can differentiate normal behavior from abnormal behavior, permissions are automated and nearly instant.

 

The typical process looks like this:

  • The user requests permission in Slack to make a code- or infrastructure-related change
  • Cmd evaluates the permission request and automatically grants or denies the request 
  • Once approved, the user can make the requested change(s)
  • Cmd records the session log in real-time, centralizing the permissions and matching the request against user actions for stronger security and compliance tracking

Companies using Cmd’s Slack integration can also take advantage of other features, such as alerting, reporting, and cloud compliance & auditing management.

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