Hardening measures for the handling of SAP standard users are an integral part of the SAP security and audit guides. Doesn’t everyone already know that? Only at first glance. Consulting practice has shown that the implementation of these protective measures is a regular, major challenge for businesses of all types and sizes.
User experience and modern user interfaces are becoming increasingly widespread. Even SAP now offers solutions like SAP Fiori, which is based on contemporary operating systems. Another helpful, reliable tool for generating custom user interfaces is SAP Screen Personas. This software product is simple to use and can be customized to users’ specific needs.
A survey was conducted during an ITOK expert talk on the greatest challenges for SAP security in March. It revealed that over half the participants see such challenges in the area of roles and authorizations. The integration of the authorization concept represents one of the core activities during SAP S/4HANA implementation and is a frequent reason for the failure of such projects as a whole. But how can you handle conflicts like resource bottlenecks, shifting priorities for subprojects, changes to tasks, and testing?
The SAP Fiori user interface is gaining in importance in current SAP S/4HANA projects. SAP applications become experiences, usability is enhanced, and the use of apps enables device-independent access – anytime and anywhere. Spaces and pages, the new way of visualizing apps in SAP Fiori Launchpad, deliver several key benefits. But how can you activate spaces and pages and what effects does this new approach have on authorization roles?
More and more companies are electing to use Fiori apps to call specific transactions in addition to the SAP GUI. This requires configuration of specific authorizations, however, which are composed of catalogs and groups. But how can you reduce the multitude of standard SAP Fiori catalogs and groups that are provided and adapt them to your own scenarios?
In the standard SAP system, there are many authorization fields that are not declared as organizational levels, but instead characterized by special values. But the more authorization fields without organizational levels that contain organization-specific values like location or country, the larger the proportion of special roles grows.
However, to achieve the greatest possible transparency in role administration and avoid unnecessary authorizations – not least with system security in mind – the creation of additional special roles should be avoided wherever possible.
Wherever electricity is flowing through a cable or data is being transmitted over a fiber optics cable, HellermannTyton products are never far away. Over the last 85 years, the company has developed into a leading global provider of cable management solutions and is on track to continue this growth both nationally and internationally. This expansion is also reflected in its SAP systems and authorizations, which have grown alongside its success. Today, systems with this level of complexity are expected – internally and externally – to comply with strict requirements.
The authorization structures at many companies have grown organically. Over the course of time, users have often been granted wider authorization privileges than they actually need for their everyday work. As a result, data availability and integrity, as well as system availability, can be critically endangered. Authorization managers see an increasing need for action to minimize the risk of SAP security incidents. After all, many more IT incidents still remain unreported compared to published cases.
Technical SAP users that have extensive authorizations like SAP_ALL pose a heightened security risk. Vulnerabilities can endanger interfaces and paralyze processes. As such, external auditors are intensifying their focus on authorization management. One of our customers – a company in the energy sector – recently faced the challenge of having to restrict the authorizations of its technical users (batch processing/RFC interfaces).
The upgrade from SAP ERP to SAP S/4HANA also involves a changeover to a new technology. This offers new possibilities thanks, to the increased speed of the SAP HANA in-memory database, as well as an improved user experience through the new FIORI UI. At the same time, however, the implementation of SAP S/4HANA also presents many enterprises with the difficult challenge of planning and executing their migration projects correctly: existing processes and role concepts have to be reconsidered.