Monitor Access to SAP Data Using Read Access Logging in SAP NetWeaver 7.4

  • by Anurag Barua, Independent SAP Advisor
  • June 20, 2016
Learn how your organization can use the Read Access Logging application to analyze access to sensitive data residing in your SAP systems starting with SAP NetWeaver 7.4.
Learning Objectives

Reading this article, you will learn:

  • The importance of a monitoring tool such as Read Access Logging in an era of widespread data breaches
  • How you can configure Read Access Logging for a specific use case pertaining to a typical large commercial organization
Key Concept

Read Access Logging is an application that is available on all SAP systems running SAP NetWeaver 7.4 (including SAP ERP Central Component [ECC], SAP Customer Relationship Management [SAP CRM], SAP Supply Chain Management [SAP SCM], and SAP Business Warehouse [SAP BW]). It enables you to configure, monitor, and analyze access to data that you deem sensitive based on your organization’s needs or any legal or statutory security requirements.


The need to protect the privacy of sensitive data—usually defined as data that is of a personal nature that can be used by hackers for malicious intent—has become a major challenge and therefore a major responsibility of any organization that handles data. Almost every company in the world, regardless of its size, handles some data of a personal nature. Today, in an increasingly online world, this data is vulnerable. This is aptly manifested in the serious breaches that have occurred in both the private and public sectors. These breaches have compromised the personal information of millions and resulted in significant monetary losses, not to mention intangibles such as loss of reputation.

SAP introduced Read Access Logging in NetWeaver 7.4 to track and audit activities within an SAP system and take rapid corrective action in case any changes to sensitive data are detected. The initial release (part of Support Pack 0) had limited functionality. With the release of Support Pack 4, Read Access Logging became a comprehensive user access and activity monitoring tool with monitoring capabilities on multiple channels. If your SAP system is on SAP NetWeaver 7.31 Support Pack 9, you can fully leverage Read Access Logging because this Support Pack is the equivalent of version 7.4 Support Pack 4.

Anurag Barua

Anurag Barua is an independent SAP advisor. He has 23 years of experience in conceiving, designing, managing, and implementing complex software solutions, including more than 17 years of experience with SAP applications. He has been associated with several SAP implementations in various capacities. His core SAP competencies include FI and Controlling FI/CO, logistics, SAP BW, SAP BusinessObjects, Enterprise Performance Management, SAP Solution Manager, Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC), and project management. He is a frequent speaker at SAPinsider conferences and contributes to several publications. He holds a BS in computer science and an MBA in finance. He is a PMI-certified PMP, a Certified Scrum Master (CSM), and is ITIL V3F certified.

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