Navigating the future of digital identity
1,450 global consumers’ experiences with passwordless authentication, hybrid identities, and ownership over personally identifiable information reveal that they want more convenience when it comes to identity credentials, according to Entrust.
“The pace of commerce and business is moving faster than ever before, and as a result, our lives are becoming more digital,” said Jenn Markey, VP of Payments & Identity at Entrust.
“As organizations and governments bring more digital services online, it’s becoming clear that the road to digital transformation has been bumpy, at times leaving users behind. With this survey, we set out to help leaders understand how users feel about the journey thus far, and how organizations can navigate the future of identity,” Markey continued.
Biometrics dethrone passwords
The results are clear − passwords have outrun their course and it’s time to provide users a simpler, more secure way to validate their identity. In fact, with more digital services available than ever, consumers are actually struggling to recall an ever-growing inventory of password credentials, with 51% of respondents resetting a password at least once a month because they can’t remember it.
Even more alarming, 15% of users who responded do so at least once a week. As consumers yearn for greater convenience and security, biometrics are poised to dethrone passwords. When given the option between biometrics or a password, 74% of respondents will choose biometrics half the time or more. A third will always choose biometrics when available.
“There’s no single or right way for organizations to authenticate customer, employee, or citizen identity,” said Mark Ruchie, CISO at Entrust.
“There is always a trade-off between providing relatively frictionless access experiences and incorporating safeguards that confirm users are who they claim to be. The authentication methods you employ can — and should — change depending on the sensitivity of data users are accessing, whether you’re serving customers or employees, or if atypical login behaviors are exhibited,” Ruchie continued.
The concept of digital identities
Digital identity is a rapidly evolving space, with the market expected to reach $70.7 billion by 2027, but consumers are having trouble keeping up, according to Entrust’s survey.
When asked whether they had an electronic ID (eID), one fifth of respondents weren’t sure. But despite a general lack of awareness about eIDs, consumers are largely on board with the concept of digital identities.
Seven out of 10 respondents said they would likely use a digital form of government-issued ID if one were available, citing improved convenience as the primary reason for why.
“Both digital and physical identities have their pros and cons — but it’s not a zero-sum game. Offering consumers access to both formats affords them the flexibility to choose what works best for them or for a given situation,” said Anudeep Parhar, Chief Operating Officer at Entrust.
“Businesses that recognize the benefits of hybrid solutions can not only position themselves as a modern company, but also as a leader that can influence global trends,” Parhar added.
Storing a digital identity
The report reveals that the majority of consumers understand that exchanging their data for convenience is a necessary trade-off, with 74% agreeing that sharing personal information for access to goods, services, and applications is unavoidable.
While consumers may be willing to give up their data for the sake of convenience, survey respondents are split down the middle when it comes to how comfortable they are with organizations owning and storing a digital identity for them and whether or not organizations can be trusted to keep their data safe.
The survey findings reinforce that offering consumers convenient digital experiences for personal identifiable information should be the bare minimum, and in order to regain customer trust, organizations also need to provide data privacy controls.