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Companies across different industries utilize identity and access management (IAM) systems to control user data access within their organization. These solutions safeguard business data behind identity authentication, making it difficult for outsiders to get through. 

Cybercriminals continue to develop sophisticated methods to acquire data illegally despite advanced security systems. Companies operating with customers’ confidential information do have risk, especially in the financial services and healthcare industries.

Although these industries are heavily regulated to secure their customer’s data, protecting millions of users with unique information daily is a challenge. 

Customer identity and access management (CIAM) strengthens businesses’ defenses against cyberattack threats while maintaining a seamless experience at every step of the customer lifecycle. A CIAM solution enables organizations to securely capture and protect customer identities and data with various authentication mechanisms to restrict access for unauthorized users. 

What is Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM)?

CIAM is digital identity management software that seamlessly integrates security, analytics, and user experiences for your business to better accommodate your customer’s needs. Like a centralized customer data hub, it links authentication, customer management, services, and other apps to provide a simplified and secured customer experience.

Studies show that 83% of US customers stop doing business with a company that experienced a data breach. Yet, 70% of consumers are willing to share personal data with organizations they interact with online as long as there are perceived benefits to the exchange.

This software challenges businesses to deliver customized buyer experiences, thanks to the data gathered from customer interactions. A secure data management system also ensures the buyer’s trust in their shared information.

Seamless user experience

Seamlessly linking customer identities allows consumers to only need one account to access your products and services across various entry points on different platforms. It enables a consistent multi-channel user experience and easier customer sign-up and log-in that encourages repeat use of your website or app to drive leads into conversions.

Customer data and analytics

Customer data is critical for companies to make informed decisions concerning their products, services, and operations. CIAM supports data analysis and segmentation collected from customers for your business to run comprehensive customer behavior reports, inform product campaigns, and improve in-house processes.

Enhanced data protection

Assure your customers that their data is safe by providing essential security features that safeguard customer information and account access from cybercriminals and comply with security policies and data privacy laws. CIAM solutions enable users to easily manage their accounts and better control how and with whom their data is shared. 

Essential Features of a CIAM Solution

A good CIAM solution makes a difference in providing an excellent buying experience and offering customers tailored services across all your channels. While no two CIAM solutions present the same function, modern CIAM solutions often come with the following features: 

1. Single sign-on (SSO) option 

Many companies have multiple web portals, applications, and sites, each with its own identity store, which creates more trouble for customers logging in. This system requires users to input their log-in credentials whenever they switch access to a different platform. 

A CIAM authentication integrates your business’ digital channels in one entry point for all applications for a seamless user experience. SSO allows customers to log in to one portal and have automatic access to the other channels in your digital ecosystem. For example, signing in to your Gmail account automatically logs you into your YouTube, GDrive, and other Google apps.

2. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) 

Customers are becoming increasingly aware of how hackers can easily steal or guess passwords, which is why MFA is now necessary for securing online information. 

MFA adds a layer of protection against unauthorized access by requiring users to prove their identity first. Customer identity verification may be held through a one-time password (OTP) sent through SMS, an email verification link, or a biometric credential like a fingerprint scan or face recognition.

You can implement MFA options with risk-based assessments of your customers’ usage and log-in patterns so it doesn’t add unnecessary friction to their overall experience.

3. Reliable scalability 

Despite today’s digital innovations, IT employees still deal with website lags and outages when faced with large volumes of customers registering and requesting access, making maintenance of excellent customer service hard, if not impossible. 

As your business grows, developing your digital channel systems becomes vital as your customers and the data you collect increase exponentially. CIAM solutions help you deliver smooth and instant access to customer-facing apps by scaling your digital channels to integrate new apps and keep up with fast-growing user volumes.

4. Unified customer profile management 

CIAM identity solutions work with user data from different sources to build data-rich unified customer profiles. These profiles work as a source of customer buying behavior and patterns. Your digital systems are then enabled to access and use the data collected to deliver consistent multi-channel experiences for every customer.

Personalized customer journeys across your digital touchpoints strengthen customer relationships and brand loyalty.

5. Privacy regulation compliance 

Different governments and official institutions enact various consumer protection laws and privacy regulations to avoid the possibility of a cyberattack. Organizations, whether local or multinational, must adhere to these resolutions to prevent any violations affecting your relationship with your customers and your record from the authorities. 

CIAM security solutions allow its users to manage personal privacy policies and options. Individual customers can control what pieces of data organizations have access to. This way, companies are gaining customer trust over data access and still fulfilling their duty to support data privacy. 

Offer Better Experiences for Your Customers

Knowing what is identity and access management and how it helps your consumers gives your business an edge over your competitors. Integrating CIAM solutions in your operations enhances and secures your brand’s digital channels for your customer’s needs while giving you comprehensive customer profiles to support critical business decisions and future campaigns. 

If you are a business owner looking to improve your cybersecurity measures with CIAM for your organization, consider partnering with an expert like Q5id! Check out Q5id’s Complete Proven Identity Solution today for all your identity, security, and analytics needs.

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