More Convenience. Less Risk. What CISOs Want From Advanced Authentication

Today’s Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) face many challenges, with the estimated cost of breaches, identity theft and cybercrime expected to double from $3 trillion in 2015 to $6 trillion in 2021. Credential theft is linked to 80 percent of hacking-related breaches, making it an enormously high priority for every organization. Many password-related issues fall into two categories. The first is a complex and rapidly changing work and consumer environment. The second is user non-compliance with password policies. The big ask from today’s CISOs is a security solution that both heightens security and increases user compliance in an increasingly complex work environment. The first step to finding a solution is to delve into the challenges.

woman on phone using laptop

Challenge 1: Managing User Expectations for Convenience

We’ve been dealing with astronomic levels of phishing, social media scams and internal theft for years. The expansive dark web makes it easier than ever for criminals to steal, sell and purchase credentials and hacking tools on the cheap. Network vulnerability is further eroded by current working trends:

  • Increased use of mobile technologies
  • Logging in remotely on a variety of devices, often in unsecured locations
  • BYOD (bring your own device) and broader BYOT (bring your own technology) policies relying on user-generated passwords

This technology environment requires that users — employees, customers or anyone seeking network access — remember dozens of passwords for multiple systems, devices and applications. This overload can lead to taking risky shortcuts, such as sharing passwords, reusing them across applications or writing them down near their computers. CISOs want and need authentication solutions that are convenient regardless of location, app or device.

Challenge 2: Finding Balance Between Convenience and Security

CISOs struggle to find the right balance between tight security and user convenience. Fortunately, more IAM (identity and access management) platforms are moving toward adaptive, risk-based authentication approaches that continuously evaluate how people try to access systems and data, and require them to provide multiple authentication factors based on perceived risk. Smart algorithms quickly establish the optimum level of authentication to strike the right balance between convenience and security.

Advances in biometric technologies including fingerprints, touch ID, voice recognition and eye scans are helping to make more fluid, risk-based authentication practices a reality. Another is the growing number of industry giants signing onto FIDO 2.0 open architectural standards, whose goal is to drive a passwordless future that leverages public key encryption technologies.

Artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning go even further with behavioral authentication factors and predictive modeling that is automatic, low-friction, adaptive and continuous. With a range of new options, the challenge is identifying the right path for your organizations.

Meeting the Challenges: Finding the Right IAM Solutions for Your Enterprise

When evaluating IAM system needs, the CISO should consider all relevant factors. The nature of your specific business will determine key drivers, such as:

  • Fraud minimization, transaction-level analysis and comparison of multiple risk factors
  • Regulatory compliance with US and state government and GDPR
  • Risk-appropriate authentication that balances user friction against the sensitivity of data
  • Security policy compliance that allows for refinement of technology to accommodate corporate and cybersecurity strategies
  • Integration with multiple types of new and legacy devices

In 2020, cybersecurity looms large and CISOs are forging ahead. Forward-thinking CISOs are identifying ways to leverage next-generation authentication solutions that combine user convenience with the right security policies across the largest range of systems, applications, devices and endpoints.

To learn more, explore our advanced authentication solutions or download the Advanced Authentication Buyer’s Guide.

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