Security vendor Centrify says it is making outsourced IT safe for business through new identity management software that provides federated access control for both employees and third-party contractors working with a company's resources.

The feature is the newest addition to Centrify's identity management products. It is designed for organizations that outsource their IT and/or application development processes, which requires giving third parties access to certain in-house resources.

Traditionally, it has been tough to federate access control and identities in this way. While cloud and mobile-friendly identity management has been the norm for years, the security industry has so far not done a great job of meeting the challenges that arise from the trend toward outsourced IT -- which will be a $335B industry by 2019, according to Gartner.

Centrify is pitching its new identity management feature as a major innovation on this front. "As more of today’s businesses outsource functions such as IT administration and rely on vendors to troubleshoot systems and applications, the need to govern and secure privileged sessions grows dramatically," said Tom Kemp, CEO and co-founder of Centrify. "Given that compromised credentials are the leading attack vector in data breaches, and that many of the high profile breaches involved third party access, Centrify’s federated privileged access for third parties reduces an organization’s identity-related risk."

The identity management tools let an external organization retain control over its employees' identities, while a customer receiving support from them can use the Centrify Web interface to give the outsourcing partner access to specific systems and applications. Access can be set at different privilege levels.

Outsourced IT is probably not going to revolutionize the channel as much as, say, the cloud. But it is an important emerging trend, which is already reshaping the way some companies manage their resources.