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Why Identity and Access Management is Crucial for Digital Transformation

As more and more organizations embark on the journey to digital transformation, they’re increasingly embracing digital ecosystems as part of the journey. Here’s how identity technology helps ensure a safe, successful trip.

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For organizations taking up the challenge of digital transformation, the good news is that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. The even better news is it’s a train—the oncoming digital ecosystem express train, as new Gartner research calls it. You have to be technology-ready to get onboard, and identity and access management technology is a key component of that readiness.

There are several aspects to being technology-ready to participate in a digital ecosystem, from developing strong talent teams to making strategic technology investments. In this discussion of identity and access management technology and the digital ecosystem, we’re focusing on the role of the technology itself, especially innovative solutions for enabling interoperability with other parts of the ecosystem.

Identity: Enabling Interactions and Interoperability in the Digital Ecosystem

What makes identity such an important part of digital ecosystem readiness? Identity assurance—or the ability to trust that people who want access to resources are who they say they are—is what engenders the trust that’s essential to working securely with multiple parties in an ecosystem. When you have the means to achieve that assurance, you can interact freely and focus on your mission, confident that those who gain access to your data, applications and other resources are entitled to that access.

Moreover, innovative identity solutions can not only foster trusted interactions among organizations in the digital ecosystem; they can also literally enable interoperability between the various technologies that are in play. This paves the way for a variety of new collaborative opportunities. Read on to learn more about how modern identity and access management technology fuels interaction and interoperability in the ecosystem.

Risk-Based Authentication: In Identity Assurance We Trust

In the digital ecosystem, the quest to balance security for the organization with convenience for the user continues. But ecosystems are by definition third-party-driven, and that makes the stakes higher and the challenge even more complex.

One of the emerging technologies for enabling frictionless, secure access is risk-based authentication, in which the identity and access management system uses analytics to evaluate user behavior and business context and adapts access decisions accordingly. If the system detects suspicious login behavior or other warning signs, it can automatically step up authentication based on the risk—instead of imposing additional authentication burdens where they may not be needed.

Identity, Interoperability and Opportunity

Being technology-ready to participate in the digital ecosystem is one thing; being technology-ready to take full advantage of the collaborative opportunities it affords is another. That’s why being technology-ready for interoperability is key.

For example, interoperability between a next-generation authentication solution and a next-generation firewall can create the opportunity to enforce authentication at the point of network access—which is both more secure for the ecosystem partners and more convenient for their customers.

Get an in-depth exploration of the role of identity in the successful ecosystem participation, including advice on setting strategic priorities for technology investments, in “Perspectives on IAM and the Digital Ecosystem,” research from Gartner available in this special report from RSA, The Transformative Power of Identity.