How CIAM Platforms Improve Customer Privacy and Security
Posted: Tuesday, Oct 03

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How CIAM Platforms Improve Customer Privacy and Security

As consumers undertake a growing proportion of transactions online, awareness is increasing of the need to have both strong security and privacy protection-measures in place. Businesses that can tick these boxes will find it much easier to attract and retain customers. Those that don’t are exposing themselves to unnecessary risks and could face significant disruption and loss.


There are a number of common reasons why a business without effective protection in place is likely to suffer as a result. They include:

  • Compromised credentials: Cybercriminals can mount an attack on a business by tricking unsuspecting staff members into interacting with a fake email or SMS that requests log-in credentials. Once armed with these, the cybercriminals can infiltrate systems, cause disruption, and steal sensitive data.

  • Weak password practices: Noone would think that, if keys had a very basic design with very few teeth, they would provide strong protection to a building. It would be relatively easy for a thief to guess the pattern, create a key, and gain entry. The same holds true for weak passwords. If they are easy to guess or used across multiple sites, it makes it far more likely they can be misused.

  • Unprotected data stores: While an organisation might be good at protecting data held in a central storage location, it might lack the same rigour when it comes to data stored in other locations. This might occur if teams make use of cloud storage services or set up a separate server to support a particular project.

  • Bots and account takeovers: Another threat that must be considered is the usage of automated bots by cybercriminals. An organisation might have the ability to fend off a few attacks but may not be able to cope with a deluge of simultaneous attacks mounted by bots.

Common reasons for data privacy violations

As well as maintaining security, businesses also need to understand the challenges faced when it comes to achieving effective privacy protection.


One of the biggest is not having the ability to capture customer consent. Companies should not collect or use personal data without a customer’s specific permission and need to have in place mechanisms that can achieve this.


Another factor often lacking is the ability to actually enforce that consent. The inability to do this creates a breeding ground for privacy violations, where the digital boundaries of individuals are disregarded and their data is misused without consequence.



The role of CIAM

Faced with these challenges, increasing numbers of organisations are taking advantage of Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM) platforms. These platforms allow a business to securely authenticate, capture, and manage customer identities and profile data while also controlling what applications, services, and information users can access.


A well-configured CIAM platform gives a business the ability to identify who their customers are and what applications they should have access to in a way that doesn’t require compromising convenience for security.


By undertaking continuous assessment of the trustworthiness of each customer’s identity throughout their transaction, businesses can dynamically adjust the level of authentication required based on real-time risk assessments to make security visible only when absolutely necessary.


A CIAM platform delivers security and privacy support in a range of different ways. All can be combined in different ways to meet an organisation’s specific requirements. The capabilities include:

  1. Password-less authentication: As a first step, a CIAM platform can deliver a password-less authentication capability. By using various risk signals, password-less authentication protects an organisation’s overall security posture by reducing the reliance on easily compromised and reused passwords.

  2. Fraud prevention: A CIAM platform can also stop bots and cybercriminals using an integrated fraud prevention solution without disturbing legitimate customers. This monitors user behaviour and device signals throughout a user session, assesses risk, and automatically makes fraud mitigation decisions.

  3. Secure customer identity data: Once a customer has registered and provided their data, it’s an obligation for the business to keep it safe and secure. A CIAM can deliver a secure, centralised directory that’s tailored for identity attributes. This allows the business to deliver unified customer profiles while retiring redundant data stores.

  4. Privacy and consent: Capturing and enforcing consent can be difficult if the process is not architected properly. With privacy and consent preferences embedded into a CIAM, a business will build customer trust and stay compliant with regulations while creating seamless digital experiences.

  5. Continuous adaptive trust: Continuous adaptive trust provides a security approach rooted in Zero Trust principles. It focuses on dynamically evaluating and adapting trust levels based on various factors and contexts in real-time. The CIAM platform uses a combination of behavioural analysis, vulnerability assessments, and contextual information to determine the trustworthiness of users.


By taking advantage of the capabilities of a CIAM platform, an organisation can significantly improve its level of both data security and privacy. Customers will be much more likely to transact with the business and develop an ongoing relationship. The result will be ongoing growth and improved profits. 

Ashley Diffey
Ashley Diffey is Vice President Australia and New Zealand for Ping Identity, a leading provider of seamless and secure digital experiences. Based in Melbourne, he is responsible for accelerating sales and bolstering customer support and services to continue driving the increasing demand for Ping Identity’s solutions in the region. Ashley originally joined Ping in late 2018 and has more than 20 years of sales and channel leadership experience. He previously worked at Venn Solutions as General Manager for Victoria. While there, he established the company’s Victorian branch based in Melbourne and expanded its portfolio of customers. He also worked at F5 Networks, where he managed the company’s partner relationship with Telstra and oversaw the organisation’s southern regional channel. Prior, he was Director for Channel Sales Australia and New Zealand at Commvault.
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