There’s no doubt that technology has helped to improve our lives. Smart devices and Internet of Things (IoT) technology can make daily tasks, such as ordering food and finding creative ways to cook that food, simpler and faster. But there’s risk involved with any new technology. If you’re adding personal information to a device, such as a smartphone, you’re increasing the odds of bad actors accessing your details, including passwords and account information.
Identity and asset management (IAM) can protect your data while at the same time allowing you to enjoy the latest technological upgrades. Classic IAM mainly addresses employees and business customers, while Customer-IAM (or CIAM) is the future of digital customer experiences.
IAM is internally-facing, focusing on authenticating and monitoring employees within an organization, while CIAM is externally-oriented, helping businesses create a secure system that ensures customer data is safe from cyber criminals. For example, CIAM can establish multi-factor authentication which prompts users for more information to gain access, such as fingerprints or voice recognition.
Tech entrepreneur Thierry LeVasseur believes that the future of IAM will see more two-factor authentication, though not in its traditional form, such as text messages or a secondary password sent by e-mail. While those methods do improve security, they are not foolproof, he notes.
Thierry LeVasseur says he is seeing two-factor authentication (2FA) physical security keys being used more often, in the form of key fobs, USB devices and electronic cards. “Basically, that authentication is set up so that the hacker can’t access information without a physical key, even if they’ve obtained your password,” he says. “It’s different from traditional two-factor authentication that sends an access code via text, making it very secure.”
2FA has become a necessity in today’s online world.
“With about 30,000 websites being hacked everyday and over 90,978 of WordPress sites of all sizes being attacked every minute, it makes sense to add an extra layer of security,” WordPress noted in an article about website security.
While both online and physical 2FA methods work well (a Google study found that SMS authentication blocked 96% of bulk phishing attacks), the best way to lock down your account with 2FA is to use a physical security key. (The same Google study found that keys blocked 100% of bulk phishing and targeted attacks.)
Of course, the downside of using a security key is that if you ever lose it or break it, you could be locked out of your accounts. And you’ll have to switch your 2FA to a new key. But using a hardware-based 2FA solution on a device you own is a way to protect your accounts or your website and is considered far better than simply using text messages or adding a second password. Similarly, a strong IAM and CIAM system can help businesses be more secure, ensuring that customer data is fully protected from online threats.