Oktane21: The Future of Identity

As organizations face unprecedented threats against their data, applications, and resources, it has become apparent to business and government alike that cybersecurity must be a priority. Without adopting modern identity, companies will continue to have breaches that will be costly for them and their customers, patients, and broader communities.

Okta’s annual users’ conference – Oktane21 – was a virtual event held earlier this year and addressed the future of identity. It highlighted the fact that the past year accelerated the adoption and elevated the importance of digital interactions, whether workforce or customer-focused, and it will be a trend that continues even as in-person experiences re-emerge.

As a result, providing secure, seamless digital experiences for customers and employees is a paramount concern for many companies, especially as the landscape shifts to support a digital-first mindset. In approaching these identity challenges, it’s also crucial that developers are empowered to build what customers need more easily, while IT teams can ensure compliance and security.

Cybersecurity is especially important, considering the prominent cyberattacks that have taken place recently. The Colonial Pipeline hack was tied to a leaked password, which is what modern identity is built to prevent. This is all part of what companies need to address as they move into the future.

These are three highlights of the conference that underscored the importance of the future of identity.

  1. Keynote documentary film
    The conference-opening keynote was a powerful documentary film that blended the personal, professional, and technological by following some of the human stories of Okta through a tumultuous 2020. The film underscored the idea that changes can occur at any moment, and business needs to be flexible enough to adapt to that change. That includes serving customers and keeping employees productive, wherever they are in the world. In an ever-changing environment where ransomware and other cyberattacks are filling the news cycle, it becomes more important than ever to have a strong security posture.
  2. Okta’s Auth0 Acquisition
    Okta CEO Todd McKinnon’s keynote featured a conversation with Auth0 CEO Eugenio Pace. They talked about how Auth0 integration with Okta empowers greater customer experiences and how Auth0’s commitment to developers enhances Okta’s offerings. Okta Identity Engine provides out-of-the-box APIs and SDKs to better support developers as they make meaningful customer experiences. This makes it easier to integrate Okta products into the app stack, integrate CIAM workflows and push data to downstream systems like Hubspot. Okta also announced they would be extending their platform to include PAM (Privileged Access Management) and IGA (Identity Governance & Administration). PAM is especially important in denying hackers untrusted access to a network. In light of current events, these additional features are timely for companies as they seek to defend themselves against ransomware and other cyberattacks.
  3. Okta Identity Wallet
    “Identity is horizontal and applies to every company, industry, and geography.”
    – Diya Jolly, Chief Product Officer, Okta

The future of digital identity is a unified platform, and Okta intends to be that platform. It is cloud-deployed, Just-in-Time, for cloud and on-prem resources, and offers security and compliance. With this ubiquity of identity, Okta also announced the Identity Wallet. Since digital identity is foundational for every aspect of work and life, Okta’s Identity Wallet will be the one place to keep all payment, identification, and other records together.

BeyondID Discusses Identity

BeyondID’s breakout session focused on digital transformation and identity with customers ATN International, Inception Health, and Johnson Financial Group. Each company had a unique story, but the importance of cybersecurity to healthcare was underscored by Dr. Melek Somai from Inception Health. He shared his organization’s journey to create a new mobile-first app to allow patients to connect with telehealth services. This is important since Dr. Somai envisions telehealth demand remaining high for the foreseeable future. Digital interactions will continue to be the norm for many customers and employees, and so organizations need to provide secure access by utilizing modern identity.

Wrap up

Identity is a key part of company strategies moving forward. Not only must companies deal with a new changing landscape with an increased emphasis on the importance of digital workforce and customer experience, but they must also implement best-of-breed cybersecurity and modern identity to fend off cyberattacks. Identity is necessary to provide a unified and secure experience and has the flexibility to embrace change and the resiliency to resist breaches.


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