Many enterprise lines of business are excited about Hadoop's ability to process large and diverse data sets and, theoretically, help reveal insights found within this data. Security teams have been less than thrilled with it, however, due to Hadoop's security shortcomings.

In particular, managing identities within Hadoop can be problematic, said Mark Weiner, chief marketing officer at Centrify, a provider of unified identity management solutions. Among the identity-related concerns he cites: too many passwords, assignment of privileges or access rights that are not granular enough, and lack of the kind of auditing capabilities needed to fulfill compliance requirements.

These shortcomings are becoming even more critical as enterprises move a growing amount of information, some of it sensitive customer and corporate data, between Hadoop and other systems.

Centrify is addressing the issue with this week's release of its Server Suite 2015, which enables companies to use their existing Active Directory infrastructures to control access, manage privilege, address auditing requirements and secure machine-to-machine communication across Hadoop clusters, nodes and services. This means organizations do not need to worry about hiring security pros with Hadoop-specific skills.

In addition, Centrify has certified its solution with Cloudera, Hortonworks and MapR Technologies, three of the most popular Hadoop platform vendors, and has created integration guides for all three platforms.

The Centrify Server Suite also offers single sign-on capabilities for both IT administrators and Big Data users that allow them to log in as themselves, rather than sharing privileged accounts. In addition, the software tracks user activity and associates it with an individual in Active Directory, providing visibility into who did what across Hadoop clusters, nodes and services.

According to Centrify, the Server Suite is licensed on a per-server basis with pricing starting at $385 per server.  Hadoop customers can request a free 30-day trial of Centrify Server Suite by visiting