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User Authentication – An Overview

Definition – User Authentication is the process of verifying a user’s identity to allow access to confidential data or systems. The word ‘Authentication’ means “genuine or real”.
Identification – User must prove who he is.
Authentication – User must prove he is who he says he is.
Authorization – User must prove he is allowed to do what he is trying to do.

There are two core components of user authentication-
1) Information used for authentication – Password, fingerprint etc.
2) Software used for authentication.

Identity Management Tools

Identity management in an organization is about defining and managing the roles and access privileges of users to a variety of cloud and on-premises applications. Customers, associates, and staff are all examples of users. Devices are laptops, servers, computers, routers, smartphones. The core objective of Identity management systems is one digital identity per person. After establishing digital identity, the task of modifying, maintaining and monitoring throughout all employee’s or device’s access lifecycle. The maximum applications have a built-in tool for user authentication (login and authentication) and therefore some companies do not require any specialized authentication tools. Cloud-based based IAM solutions not just permit clients to do authentication from anytime anyplace, they additionally give the detailed reports on analytics, access rules and policies to genuinely automate identity access and management across the enterprise.

Role Based Access Management

“Access” means what data an employee/client can see and what actions they are allowed perform once they log in. The concept of granting permissions to employees based on their position within an organization is known as Role-Based Access Control (RBAC). It provides an easy, manageable, and error-free approach to access management and companies can easily comply with legislative and statutory criteria for confidentiality and privacy more effectively. Third-party users or clients can be integrated by assigning them pre-defined roles.

Enterprise Single-Sign-On (ESSO) Solutions

With a single set of credentials, the Single Sign-On (SSO) approach allows employees or clients of on organization to access multiple applications quickly. It eliminates the need to remember several sets of passwords, resulting in a more seamless experience. Enterprise SSO has expanded its scope to all IT resources. Single Sign-On is cloud-based, making it simple to set up and allowing it the flexibility to scale as per the need of client’s organization.

Multi-Factor Authentication Solutions

Multi-Factor Authentication systems offer a wider range of authentication methods than passwords alone, like biometrics, location, OTP, additional passwords, device-based confirmation or behavior-based information to confirm user’s identity. Organizations use advanced MFA to protect their employee or client’s connections to corporate networks, VPNs, and cloud applications. Admins monitor who is accessing which network areas, from the central management console and produce comprehensive reports on account use to reduce risk. MFA greatly reduces the risk of a security breach, and confidential data is kept secure. State and Central government laws require companies who work with Personal or Identity related information like financial information to use secure and robust user authentication systems. In Certain sectors like banks Multi-Factor Authentication is mandated by law to meet certain compliance guidelines.

Risk Based Authentication Solutions

Risk-based authentication (RBA) aids in the prevention of security breach by assessing the level of risk associated with each financial transaction and the level of customer authentication needed for the organization. RBA systems analyze millions of users’ connections to check data parameters like the customer’s IP address, device, location, time to assess the risk. The crux of RBA lies in ability to reduce hassle for customers without compromising security and it gives company a big competitive advantage.

Credential Management Systems (CMS)

A central feature of the CMS architecture is centralized password management. CMS integrates with PKI components to provide IT departments with a unified solution for issuing and managing credentials for a wide range of devices, including smart cards, smartphones, USB keys, laptops, and desktop computers.