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International Privacy Day: Assess Your Data Defenses

Posted by Steve Shoaff, UnboundID CEO on 1/28/15 10:24 AM

It seems every week we’re seeing new data breaches in the headlines. This week it was license plate scanners and Blackphone vulnerabilities  Between federal laws, varying state laws, legacy technologies, new technologies and the constantly evolving ways data is compromised, protecting data, especially in customer-facing environments, requires constant vigilance and focus.

Today, International Privacy Day, is a particularly good moment for all businesses to pause and assess their data security practices. Here’s a quick list of some of UnboundID’s top tips for protecting consumer identity data:

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Topics: Data Privacy, International Privacy Day

Jay Baer: Securing Data & Improving Customer Experience

Posted by Keri Leblanc on 1/22/15 8:30 AM

Jay Baer is Founder and President of Convince & Convert, a marketing services firm. He is a digital marketing strategist, speaker and New York Times best-selling author. Jay has consulted with more than 700 companies on digital marketing since 1994 including Caterpillar, Nike, California Travel & Tourism Commission, Billabong and 30 of the Fortune 500. He was named one of America’s top social media consultants by Fast Company.

UnboundID: What are some issues that marketers have in building trust with customers today?

Baer: First and foremost is the problem of data breaches. That’s scary for people. Secondly, is that consumers want to know how the company will use their data. There’s increasing unease about privacy and tracking and retargeting. Used well it can be like magic. In some cases, it can be annoying, as if you’re being stalked. A good example is those ads that follow you across the web from site to site and you know exactly where it came from, and you don’t have any interest in that product. Consumers don’t see this type of targeting as magical because they know how this is being done.

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Topics: customer experience, data security

Executive Roundtables: Modernize Identity Management, Enable Business

Posted by Jill Jacobs on 1/20/15 11:06 AM

A modernized Identity Management architecture offers benefits well beyond improved data store performance at the scale required by today’s consumer environments; it is a key business enabler and security tool. And UnboundID customer Lenny Blum, most recently VP of Collaboration and Identity and Access Management at NBCUniversal, recognizes the full potential the right identity management platform can offer businesses.

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Topics: data security, identity management architecture

Customer Experience Expert Colin Shaw Says Data Privacy Key to Trust

Posted by Keri Leblanc on 1/16/15 8:30 AM

Colin Shaw
is a world leader in customer experience, and has written four bestselling books on the subject including most recently, Customer Experience: Future Trends & Insights (2010). In 2002, Shaw founded Beyond Philosophy™ a global customer experience consultancy. The firm specializes in helping organizations create deliberate, emotionally engaging customer experiences that drive value, reduce costs, and build competitive advantage.

UnboundID: You’ve been working in the field of customer experience for at least 20 years. How has the field changed with the advent of the Internet and digital marketing?

Shaw: With the Internet and CRM, the whole field has grown exponentially and it’s a worldwide field now. Mobility has had a big effect and the growth of the web has had a massive effect. It’s surprising to me today how often customers email over calling. Expectations have also been reset by these young upstart companies that can offer a seamless experience. Companies like Netflix, Zappos and Amazon have started with a blank page with technology, which gives them a big jump on the older companies. The newer companies are much easier and faster to deal with from the end-user experience. I used to work in call centers, and my team would have to enter data into four different systems.That’s very time-consuming and also introduces human error. 

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Topics: customer experience, data security, Data Privacy

Case Study: NAU Realizes 10X Performance Gain by Modernizing to LDAP

Posted by Keri Leblanc on 1/15/15 11:34 AM


An event that didn’t make the media’s “Top News of 2014” lists this New Year was the end of support for Oracle DSEE. Of course this wasn’t newsworthy for everyone, but for those of us in the identity data management industry, it was another milestone in the evolution of directory server protocols. And it was particularly significant for organizations still using Oracle DSEE.

Northern Arizona University's IT team was faced with this dilemma. Their aging DSEE server was becoming harder to use, configure, and optimize. The team siezed the opportunity to modernize to an LDAP directory server and implemented the UnboundID Identity Data Store. As a result, they have realized benefits such as:

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Topics: DSEE, LDAP, LDAP Directory Server, Modernization

Preference, Privacy & The Internet of Things

Posted by Steve Shoaff, UnboundID CEO on 1/9/15 8:30 AM

We’ve had our eyes on the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week, not only to learn about the great new gadgets we can add to our toy box, but also to stay alert to any trends on the horizon. As expected, the Internet of Things has dominated many conversations.

The discussion tracts that have caught our attention most are those about privacy risks and IoT. Edith Ramirez, the Chair of the United States Federal Trade Commission, warned that as we look forward to the ways in which IoT can enhance our lives, we should not lose sight of the dangers.

Concerns about the security of personal data these connected devices can collect are one thing. But another possible invasion of privacy IoT could bring is the inferences that companies are able to make about you—inferences that dictate the products and services they will promote to you and how they will interact with you, perhaps not always according to our preferences.

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Topics: consumer preferences, Internet of Things, privacy preferences

Debra J. Farber: Identity Management's Role in Data Privacy

Posted by Keri Leblanc on 1/6/15 8:00 AM

UnboundID: What are the biggest challenges at organizations right now when it comes to protecting customer privacy?

Farber: Companies are struggling to know exactly where their data is located, how many copies of that data exist, who has access to it, and for how long it is stored. They don’t have the staff to manually govern this. On top of this, there are varied laws depending on your industry and the states and countries where your business operates. Usually, there’s only a high-lev

el business process understanding as to why data is collected, from which sources, and where it resides. There’s usually confusion about “ownership,” which means that nobody knows who should make decisions about personal data. Adding to the mix is that large organizations usually have legacy systems, which have not yet been decommissioned, but which are still collecting data. Generally, companies need to tighten their processes around data lifecycle management. With the movement toward big data, the tendency for many organizations now is to collect and store as much data as possible with the hopes that insights may be gleaned in the future. Though, from a privacy perspective, that’s a bad practice. Most privacy laws require a company to collect, store, and share personal data for a specific purpose.

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Topics: consumer data privacy, consumer identity privacy, identity data privacy

IoT, Discrimination & Identity Management in 2015: Top 3 Predictions

Posted by Steve Shoaff, UnboundID CEO on 12/23/14 9:15 AM

As 2014 comes to a close, it's a good time to assess the past year and look ahead to what we can expect in 2015. The digital world continues to grow in complexity, and I have a few predictions about what this could mean for identity management in the coming year:

1. Identity Is Re-Discovered

Guess what? Internet of Things (IoT), Mobility, Big Data, Analytics and every other mega-trend in the universe all have one thing in common—identity. Identity of a human or a device; data about each, and engagement across both physical and digital channels regardless of device is first and foremost an identity problem. Smart CIOs will start making customer identity a centerpiece of their IT strategy in 2015, or they will be explaining why they didn’t for the next several years.

2. Internet of Things (IoT) Will Get Personal

Wearables, smart mattresses and other personal tech items will continue to put pressure on consumer privacy. Using data to get a better night’s sleep is great, but that’s not the only thing going on. Customers will get much smarter about just how personal these devices are and will demand control over how data is collected, analyzed, and used. CIOs will realize that making customer identity central to their IT strategy is a necessity to delivering on privacy preferences. You can read more about this topic in the whitepaper Consent Management: Giving Consumers the Power.

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Topics: identity management

End of 2014 Letter from CEO Steve Shoaff

Posted by Steve Shoaff, UnboundID CEO on 12/18/14 8:55 AM

Yesterday, many of us at UnboundID took some time out of the day for a company Christmas tradition, going to a movie. It was The Hobbit based on the book by J.R.R. Tolkien, one of my favorite authors. The Lord of the Rings is a book series that I repeatedly read and also the source of a favorite quote, “One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.” While I’m not a fan of the darkness part, I use this quote a lot when talking about technology, specifically about identity technology.

2014 saw the advance of many technology trends such as continued migration from PC to mobile, wearable tech, cloud computing, Internet of Things and omnichannel, among many others. When I step back and look at these trends, I see one thing—identity. Patrick Saylor, CEO of Gigya, called identity the “connective tissue of the Internet of Things.” I agree but also think it goes even further than that. Identity is the connective tissue of almost everything. It’s certainly the connective tissue of the previously mentioned technology trends, the One Ring to rule them all, so to speak.

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Topics: consumer identity management, identity

Identity Management Bolsters Data Security: Henry Bagdasarian

Posted by Keri Leblanc on 12/16/14 8:00 AM

Henry Bagdasarian is founder of the Identity Management Institute, a leading global organization dedicated to identity governance, risk management, and compliance. He is a Certified Identity Protection Advisor and author of the book, Identity Diet.

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Topics: identity management, identity and access management, data breach, data security, Data Privacy

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