4 Unique Features Your CIAM Needs to Build Consumer Trust


Tech Insights for ProfessionalsThe latest thought leadership for IT pros

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Trust is a cornerstone of doing business and just as important to your customers, even if they’re just an email and a password among millions of others to your firm. In fact, digital trust is key to your success, as companies that fail when it comes to trust issues are very likely to lose customers and business fast.

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4 Unique Features Your CIAM Needs to Build Consumer Trust
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Digital business security is fast moving on from virus protection and network monitoring to protecting the business and their customers at every step of their journey together. Customer identity and access management (CIAM) is one tool that helps firms assure the online safety of customers and their details, while providing a seamless and high-quality online experience across any digital platform.

What this means is that a customer isn’t stuck trying to remember a password or key phrase and can use the features of their smart device or a social media account to access your services quickly and efficiently. CIAM helps provide the right method of authentication and security at the right time to protect both users and the company. Here are some of the key features of a CIAM you need to utilize to establish trust with your customers:

1. Appropriate user authentication

Knowing that your customers are genuine before allowing them access to your services is a key feature of CIAM. Customers must feel safe about the business they’re interacting with, and authentication in all its forms is the cornerstone on which that trust is based.

With CIAM, authentication can take place through single-sign on, social media service-based logins, and through multi-factor authentication (MFA) for critical services. In our multi-device world, adaptive authentication provides a risk-based approach to authentication, checking devices, user analytics and threat intelligence. With this information an appropriate authentication mechanism will be selected based on the level of business risk or any regulations the firm functions under.

2. A frictionless approach to access

For every interaction with customers there’s a balancing act to be achieved that manages the need for security and protecting consumers’ accounts along with providing end users a simple or seamless customer experience. CIAM is designed to deliver on that juggling act, providing the appropriate level of security while making the sign-up or login process as smooth as possible. For many firms, using social sign-on and an existing social media account neatly balances the data that the consumer already relies on with a business need.

For casual transactions, signing in through PayPal or another provider saves time in creating an account, adding bank details and going through further authentication steps.

As customer behavior evolves there may be new ways to create accounts or engage with businesses. CIAM needs to be an evolving service that can adapt to those changes.

3. Painless account recovery and password resets

Research suggests the typical American had around 150 online accounts back in 2017, and there are predictions are for some people to hit 300 by 2022. How many of those are active and dormant remains to be seen, but it’s not hard to see people becoming increasingly frustrated when they need to gain access to an account.

The traditional new device, forgotten password or lost email address change processes are functional but time-consuming, especially in the age of apps when someone changes their mobile device. New ways to speed up the reset process through SMS codes help keep customers focused on their goals and minimize the delay in accessing services.

In a normal IAM scheme, your employees can contact your IT security team and ask them for help in retrieving their passwords. This often proves sub-optimal; it stresses your already thinly stretched IT team by adding to their workload. Furthermore, it delays business processes significantly as employees wait for help.

Adding consumers’ password reset requests to the mix is a recipe for disaster, for both your IT team and your customer experience.

Therefore, self-service remains one of the CIAM key capabilities. Through CIAM, consumers can retrieve or reset their passwords relatively quickly and effortlessly through email or SMS messaging. They can thus return to their cart and their transaction quickly, improving the experience and ensuring their peace of mind concerning cybersecurity.

4. Secure customer data management

Customer privacy is paramount for any business with digital services. Ensuring that data handling and storage meets local, national and regional legislation is a valuable asset for any CIAM solution.

As a business benefit, there are also CIAMs that can provide analytics based on information such as customer behavior, their activity or shopping preferences and other data that can help build a better image of the customer. This can benefit marketing and help improve performance in sales other areas, as long as customers are aware of up-to-date privacy and other agreements that the CIAM can handle as part of a sign-in process.

Finding a CIAM solution that fits your business is key, but ensuring it provides the features that deliver value now and into the future as part of a platform for the digital consumer are vital to ensuring customer satisfaction and business success.

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