Their clients include Adobe, 20th Century Fox, Eurostar, MGM Resorts and NASDAQ. Todd McKinnon, the CEO, is a coffee fanatic, he can often be found walking on his hands during long meetings to blow off some steam and somehow he persuaded (with the help of a few hundred thousand dollars) none other than Barack Obama to be the star-turn speaker.
Welcome to Oktane18.
At the 4,004-room Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Oktane18 kicked off with keynotes from McKinnon and COO Frederic Kerrest and the theme of the annual conference (which attracted over 4,000 delegates), was, unsurprisingly, identity protection.
If You Ain’t Got ID, You Ain’t Coming In
You can read about the services Okta provide on our website here but the annual conference gave the company the opportunity to outline the CEO’s ‘strong vision for how passwords are evolving into digital identities, and what his company needs to do protect people as more and more of their lives are managed online’ so writes Julie Bort at ukbusinessinsider.com.
He’s a fascinating guy and you can read more about him in next week’s ‘Why We Love Okta’ blog but he writes with real passion about his subject.
Immediately after his keynote welcome speech (for which he put in over 18 hours’ of practice) he penned a blog for the company’s website where he shared his ‘belief that identity is one of the greatest challenges and opportunities of our time’ and the conference announcements back up what he says.
Identity theft and data breaches are the 21st century’s version of a burglar breaking into your home with a black and white striped jumper on and a bag emblazoned with ‘SWAG’.
So, What Are Okta Doing About It?
Third Party ID Solutions – After last year’s successful launch of their expanded APIs and the Developer Edition, they’ve gone one further. If you’re building software and using Okta as your identity layer, a new API has been launched called One App which allows you to use it 100% FREE if you display ‘Identity by Okta’. It’s marketing for them and a free API for you – dictionary definition of a win/win.
No More Passwords – Passwords are a colossal pain to store and remember and with ‘threat actors’ targeting the weakest point of a company’s security – its people – it may be time to invest in technology that replaces passwords with stronger yet simpler user authentication. Okta’s ThreatInsight technology allows customers to better understand their own risk tolerance requirements and adapt their policies accordingly. Once they set policies that fit their needs, Okta automates the risk-based assessment and response, enabling IT teams to automatically step up authentication.
Signing In Is Now More Secure – It’s easy to sign into a new app using Facebook. One click and you’re in. However, it’s not the safest way to do it. Sign In is the ‘connective tissue between users and a product or app. Using Sign In with Okta, organizations can quickly and efficiently provide their employees, customers, and extended partner, supplier, and contractor ecosystem with a secure single sign-on (SSO) experience for any app or website.’
One Click Efficiency – With Okta acting as the central hub for apps and services, Project Onramp allows IT admins to find, test, set up, and give their teams access to the tools and services they need with the click of a mouse. This means it will be possible to set up a tenant with full enterprise functionality in just minutes without any complicated deployments or provisioning required.
Good Password, Bad Password – There are five hundred million passwords floating around the internet thanks to data breaches and sites like www.haveibeenpwned.com lets you find out if yours is one of them. In 2017, Okta added functionality that allows businesses to check their users’ passwords ‘against lists of known bad passwords as well as known bad password policies’ including using your birthday or child’s name… PassProtect quickly alerts users of possible ‘riskier’ passwords so they can take action immediately and without compromising privacy.
A New Workspace Experience – Every employee needs access to the tools and services to help them be more productive, and their IT teams want to enable that — but only if it can be accomplished securely. A secure workspace means providing employees with the right access to cloud apps and on-premises solutions, at the right time, to the right devices. Equally important, secure access can no longer come at the expense of the user experience. No organisation should have to choose between the two. In partnership with VMware, Customers will benefit from improved choice and flexibility as they provide employees with a central, secure hub to access every app, service, and system in an organisation.
Connecting Directories With The Cloud – the world’s most successful companies are utilizing cloud applications, platforms, and infrastructure to streamline their processes and reduce costs. While most organizations are on their journey to the cloud, many enterprises are not completely replacing their legacy infrastructure. Partnering with Workspace, IT admins can easily provision and de-provision users from Workplace, enabling them to grant and revoke access to sensitive company communications to ensure the appropriate level of access for users.
That’s Amazing News, But Are They Investing In Ecosystems To Drive Social Good?
Remarkably, they are.
The Okta For Good Fund is a result of ‘conversations with both non-profit and tech partners on the importance of collaboration to drive social impact outcomes’ says Erin Baudo Felter, Executive Director of Okta For Good, the company’s corporate social impact initiative.
The company have entered into a partnership with Fast Forward, a non-profit supporting social entrepreneurs building original technology for impact and you can read more about their work here.
So that was Oktane18, the biggest and most comprehensive annual conference in Okta’s history. Until, presumably, Oktane19…
Have a good week.