Okta streamlines IAM portfolio with consumer identity management cloud

Okta streamlines IAM portfolio with consumer identity management cloud

Incorporation of Auth0 features and more closely integrated management highlights new cloud-based IAM (identity and access management) system.

Credit: Dreamstime

Potential access management customers got a new option from Okta as the identity and access management (IAM) provider announced a newly streamlined Consumer Identity Cloud system designed to simplify the deployment and use of its various products.

Okta said that the new cloud program is split into two main components — those aimed at providing identity validation services for consumers, and those aimed at enterprise customers.

The former is focused on providing high-security options for online transactions, support for passkeys (instead of passwords, which are thought to be less secure), and providing an all-in-one security center monitoring system for quick response to suspicious activity.

The customer identity cloud for software-as-a-service (SaaS) apps includes Okta’s Workforce Enterprise Connection, which provides a turnkey integration for Okta’s Workforce Identity Cloud system for logins across a business’ systems, as well as directory synchronisation, custom security policies and more.

The platform runs in Okta’s own cloud, meaning there’s no need for a data center or own-cloud presence, which is an architecture that some organisations will be more comfortable with than others, depending on their compliance needs.

Okta said that the average organisation deploys 89 online apps, and that it’s a universal challenge for organisations to manage logins and identity without causing user headaches and lots of extra work for developers.

“Conventional wisdom tells us that you can make an application super secure, but very inconvenient to use,” said Eugenio Pace, president of customer identity at Okta. “Or you can make it super convenient, but at the cost of security or privacy. This is a false choice.”

According to Henrique Teixeira, senior director and analyst at Gartner Research, one of the top cyber security trends for 2022 has been identity-based threat detection and response, which means that Okta’s new offering could conceivably prove helpful for a wide range of users.

“Attacks to identity systems are on the rise,” he said. “It really doesn’t matter if an organisation is using one or multiple vendors, all identity systems became prime targets for malicious attacks.”

An alternative to multiple in-house IAM apps

Currently, a large number of organisations are still using in-house, custom-built solutions for identity management, particularly on the consumer-facing side. This means that a unitary identity management system could be a dramatic simplification for a large number of potential users, according to Teixeira.

What’s more, Okta’s recent acquisition of Auth0, an identity management platform, brings with it new capabilities that the company has now integrated into the new Consumer Identity Cloud product. In the immediate wake of the acquisition, Auth0 had operated as a fully independent business unit, but no longer.

“[The new product] reduces the confusion of overlapping features from the two companies,” said Teixeira. “Capabilities like bot detection, available in Auth0, help with the [threat response] side of the equation.”

Okta said that most capabilities of the new system are available today, with more features, including support for "highly regulated identity" management, expected to launch by the end of next year's second quarter.

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