How often do you want to keep your essential secrets safe? These include passwords, keys, APIs, or codes you want to secure. It is like protecting your hidden treasures. But how do we make sure they stay safe? That’s where the Secret Management Tools come into play.
Imagine these tools as special bodyguards for your digital assets. They keep it locked up and only give access to the right people or programs when needed. This article will discuss top-secret management tools, what they do, and how they can make your online life more secure.
10 Top Secret Management Solutions to Ensure Stronger Security
By choosing any Secret Management vault or tool, you can safeguard your passwords, keys, APIs, etc., without concern for any threats. We are presenting you the Top 10 Best Secret Key Management Software 2023.
1] AWS Secrets Manager
AWS Secrets Manager, an Amazon Web Services (AWS) tool, securely stores and manages confidential data like passwords and keys. It simplifies credential management, eliminates complex coding, and provides secure storage for easy retrieval via API calls. This uses AWS Key Management System for encryption, ensuring strong data security.
Key Features of AWS Secrets Manager
- Secret Storage and Management: This tool keeps your vital information safe and organized. This allows you to create, change, find, delete, and copy secrets like usernames and passwords for various AWS services.
- Strong Security: It provides robust security by locking secrets with special AWS keys. Further, it aids in controlling access using AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM).
- Secrets Rotation: It simplifies regular password changes for enhanced security. Thus, it automatically updates secrets on a schedule or as needed.
- Secret Monitoring: It watches your secrets for unusual activity and alerts you when something is amiss. This even offers detailed logs for review.
- Integrations: It seamlessly works with various Amazon and AWS tools. These ensure a smooth collaboration with multiple services.
In simple words, AWS Secrets Manager is like a super-secure safe where you can store and manage your essential secrets (like passwords).
2] Cloud KMS
When you store data in Google Cloud, it automatically encrypts it while at rest. Yet, by utilizing the Cloud Key Management Service (Cloud KMS), you can exercise more precise control over how this encryption at rest is implemented.
Thus, you can control how their encryption keys are handled. Cloud KMS offers a robust and adaptable solution for managing encryption keys, addressing the needs of diverse applications and industries.
In short, Cloud KMS enhances data protection capabilities in the Google Cloud environment.
Key Features of Cloud KMS
- Unified Key Management: Manages symmetric and asymmetric cryptographic keys in the same way as on-premises environments.
- Customer-Managed Encryption Keys (CMEK): Use keys from Cloud KMS with other Google Cloud services.
- External KMS Integration: Utilize external KMS to protect data in Google Cloud and maintain separation of data and keys.
- Automatic Key Rotation: Set rotation schedules for symmetric keys to generate new key versions automatically at fixed intervals.
- Kubernetes Secret Encryption: Encrypt Kubernetes secrets in Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) using keys managed in Cloud KMS.
- Secure Storage with Secret Manager: Safely store API keys, passwords, certificates, and sensitive data using the Secret Manager storage system.
By utilizing these features, Cloud KMS could be the best choice for you to consider as one of the best secret management systems.
3] Microsoft Azure Key Vault
Microsoft has Azure Key Vault, which is a special one because of its efficiency. Further, it can keep many different types of digital stuff safe. It has many useful features, so people can use it differently to match their needs.
Besides, it’s flexible, meaning it helps you with lots of security and identity tasks. Microsoft Azure Key Vault ensures people protect important data from intruders.
Key Features of Microsoft Azure Key Vault
- Centralized Storage: Azure Key Vault provides a secure central location to store and manage secrets and cryptographic keys. It even grants precise control over their use and distribution.
- Unauthorized Access Prevention: It minimizes the risk of unauthorized access and data leaks. The tool allows administrators to store security information separately from the application code.
- Secure Retrieval: Applications can retrieve information securely through URIs, ensuring data confidentiality.
- Multi-Layered Security: Azure Key Vault ensures robust data protection with strict security protocols. Azure Active Directory handles user authentication. Besides, administrators define authorization levels using role-based access control (Azure RBAC) and key vault access policies.
- Flexible Data Protection: Users can choose between industry-standard algorithm software or hardware security modules (HSMs). These help in data protection tailored to specific needs. Even Microsoft cannot access your data due to robust security measures.
Microsoft Azure Key Vault offers a centralized, highly secure solution for secrets and cryptographic keys. These promote data security through customized access controls and comprehensive monitoring.
4] CyberArk’s Conjur
Conjur Secrets Manager by CyberArk is like a guardian for secret information in computer programs and tools. It keeps this information safe and makes it easy to change when needed. Conjur works well with different computer tools and can be used in various technology setups.
This helps ensure that sensitive information stays secure and keeps an eye on things to catch any unusual activity.
Thus, it’s a helpful tool for teams wanting to protect their secrets. To understand this fully, let’s focus on this tool’s features.
Key Features of CyberArk’s Conjur
- Threat Protection: CyberArk detects and mitigates application threats, securing remote access, web browsers, Windows OS, and IT apps.
- Industrial Control Security: Safeguard critical systems from cyber threats by securing Operational Technology (OT) used in industrial equipment monitoring and control.
- Windows Authentication: CyberArk Vault simplifies access without extra logins, with installation tailored to system architecture.
- Audit & Reporting: Easily generate Vault activity reports, export data, and schedule automatic reports with customizable content and access controls.
- DevOps Security: CyberArk’s DevOps solution scales security with six core principles to protect DevOps tools and the software supply chain.
- Unix/Linux Access: CyberArk’s Privilege Managers control and monitor admin rights, ensuring secure access based on assigned roles and tasks in Unix/Linux environments.
Thus, this tool by CyberArk can be your best companion to secure your keys and passwords easily.
HashiCorp is a prominent cloud application automation provider, offering HashiCorp Vault, a secret management platform for securing cloud application secrets. It encrypts secrets before storing them, provides dynamic, time-limited secrets, and offers self-managed and cloud-based options for enhanced security.
Key Features of HashiCorp
- Centralized Secrets Management: Vault is a central hub for efficiently managing and updating secrets across various environments. This ensures their currency and security. It strictly controls and audits access, reducing the risk of unauthorized breaches and making it crucial for building a secure software system.
- Encryption as a Service (EaaS): Vault provides robust data encryption in transit and at rest, fortifying your data against intrusions. This ensures that the data remains encrypted even if a breach occurs, rendering it invaluable to attackers.
- Flexible Authorization: Vault supports multiple authentication methods, including GitHub, LDAP, and AppRole. Each method has its use case, requiring clients to authenticate before interacting with Vault. This generates a token upon successful authentication.
HashiCorp Vault’s versatility in storing various types of secrets shows its identity-based secret and encryption management capabilities.
Many businesses and people worldwide use Keeper, which has excellent user ratings. It helps organizations view, secure, and control access to their systems.
Besides, even small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) benefit through Keeper by protecting their data, making work more manageable, and meeting rules. People like it because it’s easy to use to manage passwords and secure and works on different devices.
Key Features of Keeper
- Master Password: Users set a single master password for access and create a security question as a backup.
- Password Management: Securely store and access logins and passwords across devices, eliminating the need to remember multiple passwords. The Password Generator creates strong passwords.
- KeeperFill: Its browser extension offers website autofill functionality, with admin control over features on different sites.
- BreachWatch: Dark web monitoring for Business plans notifies users and admins of compromised passwords and potential threats.
- Vault Offline Access: Allows offline access to vaults on various devices, requiring a master password or biometric authentication.
- Role-Based Access Control (RBAC): Administrators define access permissions based on user roles, including the “Keeper Administrator” role for added security.
Thus, Keeper Password Manager offers users and administrators robust password management and security features.
AKEYLESS offers a Unified Vault platform to secure DevOps credentials and access, spanning hybrid cloud and legacy environments. It rapidly enhances security, ensuring compliance and streamlining DevOps operations.
The above includes simplifying DevOps Secrets management, enforcing Zero-Trust Access, and automating access. It extends to credentials, tokens, and API keys across DevOps and Cloud tools.
Moreover, it also improves overall security through unified authentication and just-in-time access permissions.
Key Features of AKEYLESS
- Advanced Security: This online tool utilizes cutting-edge encryption and zero-trust principles to safeguard data, even if access credentials are compromised.
- Centralized Access Management: Provides a single platform to manage access across systems, simplifying administration and control.
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Akeyless supports MFA methods for added security.
- Seamless Integration: Easily integrates with diverse applications, systems, and cloud platforms.
- Precise Access Control: Akeyless Allows fine-grained access policies based on roles, reducing unauthorized access risks and ensuring compliance.
These features of Akeyless enhance data security, simplify access management, and promote compliance for organizations.
Infisical is like a tool that helps keep important information safe. What’s unique about it is that it gets regular developers who contribute to maintaining safe secrets, not just the security experts. This is good because it makes developers more responsible and helps make everything more secure.
The tool is like teaching everyone in a team to lock the door and not just rely on the security experts. It’s a safer way to work together.
Key Features of Infisical
- Automatic Integration: it seamlessly connects with infrastructure tools like Docker, Kubernetes, Terraform, and third-party services, including GitHub Actions, Vercel, and CircleCI.
- Secret Workflows: It has tools to help with developer onboarding, secure changes to secrets, and ensure compliance across different environments.
- Dashboard UI: A user-friendly central hub for developers to access and modify secrets (based on permissions). Managers can set roles, monitor activity, review audit logs, and more.
- Infisical Radar: Constantly scans and monitors secrets to prevent leaks and unauthorized access within version control systems.
- Infisical CLI: It enables developers to easily add secrets to their applications as environment variables. The tool supports various approaches through APIs and SDKs for flexibility.
Scaleway is a cloud computing company that provides various secret management solutions. Among these offerings is the Scaleway Secrets Manager, a managed service designed for securely storing and handling secrets used within your applications.
Additionally, Scaleway offers other secret management features, including the Key Management Service (KMS) and Parameter Store. It provides an extensive range of services to cater to diverse needs.
Key Features of Scaleway
- Computing: Scaleway offers a broad selection of bare metal servers, virtual machines, and Kubernetes clusters suitable for various applications.
- Infrastructure: Scaleway delivers a broad spectrum of infrastructure services. These encompass bare metal servers, virtual machines, storage solutions, and networking resources.
- Cloud Computing: The tool’s cloud computing services span Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS) to accommodate various cloud needs.
- Storage: They provide diverse storage options, including block, object, and file storage.
- Networking: Scaleway offers a variety of networking solutions, such as load balancers, VPNs, and private networks.
- Databases: Its managed database services encompass MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, and more, ensuring comprehensive database support.
10] 1Password (fka SecretHub)
1Password is a simple tool for developers that keeps project passwords and keys safe. You can protect your project with just a few lines of code. Everything is super secure and private, so there is no need to worry about secrets getting out. You can control who can see what, and it’s easy to check who’s using the secrets.
Plus, it’s open source, designed for security, and easy to use!
Key Features of 1Password
- Client-side Encryption: It encrypts everything on your end, so only the people or devices you share secrets with can read them.
- Audit Logging: It records everything in audit logs, so you know who did what and when.
- Open Source: You can check out the entire code on GitHub.
- As a Service: You don’t have to worry about hosting the secret management – it’s provided as a service.
- Integration with so many: You can use it with several tools and platforms like Golang, Python, .NET, Docker, Terraform, AWS services, Kubernetes, Windows Server, Linux, Jenkins, VS Code, Node.js, Django, and Spring Boot.
Thus, with so many captivating features and facilities, you can choose 1Password as your secret management companion without any doubt.
How We Reviewed Secret Management Tools?
The selection process for these secret management tools involved thorough research and evaluation. We considered several key factors:
- Security: We assessed each tool’s security features, encryption methods, and compliance with industry standards to protect sensitive data.
- Ease of Use: We evaluated the user-friendliness of the tools, looking for intuitive interfaces and simple integration with existing workflows.
- Scalability: We considered whether the tools can accommodate the needs of both small businesses and large enterprises. This includes their ability to scale with growing demands.
- Integration: We examined how well the tools integrated with popular development and deployment platforms. Thus, we aimed to ensure compatibility with a wide range of systems.
- Audit and Monitoring: We checked for robust auditing and monitoring capabilities. Thus, we tracked access and changes to secrets for compliance and security purposes.
- Cost-effectiveness: We analyzed the pricing models to determine if the tools offered good value for their features and capabilities.
- Reliability: We looked into the reliability and uptime of the tools to ensure that users can trust them.
- Innovation: We assessed whether the tools incorporated innovative features and technologies to address evolving security challenges.
Based on these criteria, we selected the secret management tools that stood out as reliable, secure and well-suited for various use cases. This ensures that organizations can confidently protect their sensitive information.
Secret Management Best Practices
Many of you would be considering using the Secret Management tools for the first time. Besides, some of you might be disappointed by the way it works! Here’s where you should know how to leverage Secret Management tools correctly.
Let’s dig into the details:
Find and Collect Credentials with Automation
Use automation to find and gather passwords, keys, and other secret information across your computer systems. Keep them all in one secure place, like a digital safe. Always add new ones to this safe.
Store Secrets as a Special Computer Code
In computer programs and settings, don’t put secret information in a way that’s hard to change. Instead, use a secure method like unique computer code to handle secrets. This way, it’s easier to make them more secure if needed.
Keep Difficult to Hack Passwords
Ensure your passwords follow strict rules, like being long, complicated, and unique. Change them regularly, and never share them. If you do share one, change it right away. For extra important stuff, use one-time passwords that change every time.
Monitor Who’s Accessing Your Secrets
Keep a record of who’s using essential secrets. It’s like taking notes to see if anything unusual is happening. You can also record what people type and see on their computer screens. This helps spot anything suspicious and stop it if needed.
Ensure That Third-Party Comply With Secret Management Protocols
If other companies work with you, ensure they also follow the rules for secrets. Don’t let them accidentally expose secrets.
Check for Odd Behavior
Keep an eye out for anything strange happening with your secrets. The more organized and centralized your secrets are, the better you can spot any problems.
Ensure Everyone Follows Security Protocols
Ensure everyone in your team knows that security is essential, from the start of a project to the end. Everyone should help keep secrets safe and not put them in code.
After knowing the Secret Management best practices, consider what type of people can use these tools! Are there any organizations, or are they only for individuals? Let’s dig into the details!
General Use Cases of Secret Management
After knowing How to leverage the power of Secret Management tools, you might be looking at what type of industries use them! Let’s dig into the details!
- Financial Institutions use Secret management tools to Safeguard customer account passwords securely.
- Healthcare Providers use Secret management tools to Store and manage electronic health records confidentially.
- Government Agencies also use Secret management tools to protect classified information effectively.
- Educational Institutions benefit from Secret management tools to manage student records and financial data with enhanced security.
- Retailers use these tools to handle credit card data and sensitive customer information securely.
- Technology Companies are also one of the users to manage API keys and other secrets for product and service development.
- Small Business Owners use secret management tools to safeguard website and online account passwords efficiently.
- Individuals take benefit of one of these tools to Store and manage personal sensitive data like bank account numbers and Social Security information.
Thus, these tools are valuable to anyone, whether an organization or an individual. It is the best for secure data storage and management. This is because it protects against unauthorized access, theft, and misuse of sensitive information.
These ten best secret management tools are like guardians for keeping important stuff safe in the digital world. They help ensure that sensitive information, like passwords and special codes, stays locked up and is secure against hackers and similar people.
Further, these ensure only the right people can access the important stuff. Whether you’re a big company protecting customer data or just someone looking after personal secrets, these tools are your trusted friends.
Always be ready to keep your information safe at any cost!