SecurEnvoy, vendor of tokenless authentication, has just announced its partnership with PasswordBank, in order to bring two-factor tokenless authentication to the cloud. The authentication will become a part of PasswordBank’s single sign-on platform, and will now be made available to PasswordBank’s customers.
Steve Watts, sales director at SecurEnvoy, commented on the partnership, noting the benefits of cloud technology: “With the flexibility of the cloud, suddenly workers really do have the freedom they need.”
Watts defined that freedom as the ability to release “employees from their workstations, and [give] them access to the tools they need, wherever they are and whenever they need it.”
As a part of the deal, PasswordBank’s customers will gain access to Google Apps, Microsoft Office365 and Salesforce.com. These services will be provided through PasswordBank’s single sign-on platform, and will work via SMS message for two-factor authentication.
“Knowing how important security is, many companies implement two-factor authentication to ensure that they always know who is accessing their systems at any time. But forcing users to carry tokens around with them (and not letting them log in if they don’t have them) defeats the point,” said Watts.
Soft authentication tokens are fast becoming preferred to physical tokens, especially with the vast influence smartphones and apps have on the market today.
However, there is a certain level of doubt and fear regarding the security of information in the cloud and passed through smartphones and SMS. This has led to a slower acceptance and adoption soft tokens in the industry.
The partnership of PasswordBank and SecurEnvoy can be seen as a sort of vote of confidence from the two companies that soft tokens are the way of the future, and that more companies should get onboard.
The situation can be compared, in a way, to carrying a physical address book in order to guarantee the protection of the information within, or using a smartphone to store the address book’s information, secured with a password. Looking at it this way, the choice seems pretty clear, but the issue continues to have parties on both sides, with no telling how it will turn out in the coming years.
Edited by Rich Steeves