No one needs to tell you how quickly digital technologies are evolving. Or that data privacy has become a major challenge for businesses, governments and individuals alike.
Each time we use digital services, we create and exchange billions of pieces of data. It’s not just the volume of data that is set to grow. People’s digital interactions will have multiplied by a factor of 50 from 2010 to 2025.
Data is also becoming more personal, forming our online lives. By linking it to our digital identity, we can prove that it’s ours. We can access it whenever we choose. And we can decide to share it or keep it private. This creates a world of opportunities for new services that benefit consumers and organizations alike.
Yet identity theft and data breaches are both growing in frequency and sophistication. As our lives become more digitally connected, these two issues could threaten everything – from our financial transactions and medical records to how we cross borders.
With frictionless authentication, an organizationcan elect not to require the use of a token in
specific cases, for example if a user is accessing a low-risk platform from a trusted device.
> Device flexibility. Next-generation authentication platforms have to enable user access from multiple devices, including tablets, laptops, and smart phones. This requires mechanisms for generating software tokens that can be run on any device.
> Administrative controls. Administrators need to be able to manage all users across all devices and resources. To meet this charter, they need automation, central management, and visibility into user access across multiple resources. To ensure users have an optimal experience, administrators need to be equipped with granular controls and flexible customization.
> Frictionless authentication capabilities. To ensure security controls are enforced, while streamlining user access, organizations should have the ability to enable frictionless authentication. With frictionless authentication, an organization can elect not to require the use of a token in specific cases, for example if a user is accessing a lowrisk platform from a trusted device.
> Software-based tokens. By leveraging software-based tokens, organizations can simplify the user experience, and reduce the cost and help desk calls associated with hardware tokens.
> Single sign on. Next-generation authentication platforms need to enable users to sign on once to gain access to all corporate assets. Leveraging open standards like SAML, these platforms can, for example, enable a user to log on to Google apps, and when he subsequently goes to Salesforce.com, have the credentials automatically furnished to the application, so he can get straight in, without having to log in.
> Context-driven Identity, Access Management. Security teams need to be able to apply varying controls depending on the specific scenario, and automatically have stronger policies enforced when highly sensitive assets are being accessed or higher-risk situations arise. Security teams should be able to apply policies based on who the user is, what they’re attempting to access, where they’re located, and whether the device is trusted. In addition, policies should also be customized based on a user’s past activities.
> Support for all access needs. The next-generation platform should address any near-term and long-term secure access needs, including support for VPNs, SaaS offerings, Web portals, and more.
> Broad token support. Platforms should offer support for a range of tokens, including hardware, software, SMS, and tokenless options, as well as tokens from a number of vendors.
> Open integration. The platform should offer flexible integration, with every feature accessible via an open API.