NIST Framework Compliance with SPHEREboard

Explore how SPHEREboard supports NIST Framework compliance, ensuring robust Identity Hygiene and streamlined cybersecurity operations within complex organizations.

March 15, 2024
NIST Framework Compliance with SPHEREboard


NIST’s Leading Role in Governance, Risk, and Compliance Frameworks

As organizations navigate the ever-evolving landscape of cybersecurity threats, adhering to established frameworks becomes paramount.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Framework has emerged as a foundational guideline, providing a structured approach to cybersecurity risk management. NIST has recently launched CSF 2.0 which features an expanded scope and a newly added sixth pillar. The new NIST 2.0 CSF includes enhanced guidance designed to provide benefits across all sectors, extending beyond critical infrastructure. (source: NIST).

Despite the evolving nature of the framework, large organizations remain focused on current compliance. Regardless of these efforts, threat actors actively seeking opportunities to exploit organizations.


Navigating 108 “Yes” or “No” Subcategories in a “Maybe” Reality

NIST’s CSF is comprised of 108 subcategories covering a wide range of concepts that, when combined, support organizations in creating a robust and measurable cybersecurity program to manage risk. The challenge is that these subcategories are all created to be addressed in a “yes” or “no” format when cybersecurity programs are rarely, if ever, that simple.

Due to the complex nature of enterprise cybersecurity programs, many organizations have adopted a “1-N” relationship where one subcategory could be aligned to multiple practices or tools within information security.

So, how do companies meet the rigorous standards set by the NIST Framework in the face of rising cyber threats and the reality of 1-N relationships among subcategories? By integrating SPHEREboard as an Identity Hygiene and remediation platform along with other security components, like those from our extensive connector library, to close the gaps in their cybersecurity program.


How SPHEREboard’s Capabilities Support NIST Framework Compliance

SPHEREboard is designed to not just align with but elevate NIST CSF compliance. Our focus on prioritizing Identity Hygiene and fortifying Privileged Access Management practices sets SPHEREboard apart in enhancing your cybersecurity posture.

With these challenges in mind, we developed an Analysis Matrix to align SPHEREboard with the subcategory components of the NIST CSF, employing the following concepts:

  • Complete – One or more of SPHEREboard’s capabilities addresses all components of the NIST Stage Subcategory
  • Contribute – One or more of SPHEREboard’s capabilities addresses all components of the NIST Stage Subcategory
  • Inform – SPHEREboard provides insights that can be used to decide HOW to identify and address risk in the NIST Stage Subcategory


Mapping SPHEREboard Capabilities to the NIST Framework

To align SPHEREboard’s intelligent discovery, intuitive reporting, and automated remediation capabilities with NIST, we broke these capabilities into four categories within the context of the CSF.

  • Identify – SPHEREboard leverages advanced analytics of Accounts, Groups, and identities to identify and evaluate an organization’s risk exposure.
  • Protect – SPHEREboard utilizes intelligent discovery and enforcement of identities related to accounts with elevated permissions, file system access, collaboration tools, and access groups.
  • Detect – SPHEREboard automates sustainability processes to ensure controls are met and risk is reduced on an ongoing basis.
  • Respond – SPHEREboard enables organizations to execute a remediation plan by automating the remediation of control violations.

Our evaluations determined that SPHEREboard’s Identity Hygiene capabilities either directly or indirectly supported 24 of NIST’s framework subcategories, with the greatest impact being in the Identify and Protect categories.


SPHEREboard’s vital role in your NIST CSF compliance efforts

No single tool can cover all 108 NIST subcategories simultaneously. SPHEREboard, however, focuses on a broad spectrum of categories related to identity and privileged access management. It seamlessly integrates with an extensive array of tools and processes, effectively closing critical gaps in any company’s Identity Hygiene program.

SPHEREboard’s wide range of capabilities zero in on major components of the NIST framework such as:

  •  Intelligent discovery
    (NIST CSF Subcategory PR.AC-1, ID.AM-2, RS.MI-2, and more)
  • Identity, account, and group correlation
    (NIST CSF Subcategory ID.AM-3, ID.AM-2, ID.GV-3, and more)
  • Advanced analytics and reporting
    (NIST CSF Subcategory ID.RA-1, PR.PT-1, ID.AM-2, and more)
  • Remediation of account, group and data control violations
    (NIST CSF Subcategory ID.BE-4, RS.MI-2, PR.AC-1, and more)
  • Sustained protection of an organization’s assets
    (NIST CSF Subcategory PR.AC-4, PR.DS-1, PR.DS-3, PR.DS-5, and more)

You can download the complete list of SPHEREboard’s NIST supporting capabilities here.

The combined reporting modules offer complete and comprehensive insight into access details, providing clarity on who has access to what and why. Furthermore, SPHEREboard’s comprehensive integration with various IT information security tools enhances data enrichment, offering Security Administrators a versatile set of capabilities.


Discover how SPHERE can assist your organization in achieving compliance with the current NIST Framework and seamlessly adapting to the new NIST Framework.  Contact us for more information.


SPHERE is the global leader in Identity Hygiene. We are dedicated to reshaping modern identity programs by embedding this foundational fabric, enabling organizations to quickly reduce risks. Our expertise lies in leveraging automation to deliver immediate time-to-value, protectings an organization’s accounts, data, and infrastructure.

Driven by our core values of passion, empathy, and transparency, our vision drives us to continually innovate, helping our clients to sleep better knowing their attack surface is drastically reduced, thwarting the plans of bad actors every single day.

We’re ready to help you address your identity hygiene and security challenges. To find out more about SPHERE and our solutions, please visit

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