Delfigo Security - Strong Authentication

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Home Strong Authentication Should Startups Be Thinking About Strong Authentication?

Should Startups Be Thinking About Strong Authentication?

Multi-factor strong authentication simply makes good business sense

I recently attended The Wharton Entrepreneurs Conference (WEC25) in Philadelphia, PA. I took time to visit several companies that were part of the exposition.

The concepts and ideas were interesting and wide ranging. The atmosphere in the exhibition hall was one of optimism, hope, and grand visions. There were companies that had advanced algorithms to shake you out of bed just at the right time, shopping mall for kids, collecting money for good grades, finding and communicating with business associates more efficiently, electronic class room for teachers, and finding authentic sneakers for sale, among others. I felt odd and somewhat out of place (and it had nothing to do with my age!) but the fact that several of the companies I spoke to had not yet fully thought through a revenue model (some were even brash about not having the need to make money).  Several of the ideas I listened to were member based services hoping to attract flocks of users and then collect on ad revenues or a percent value of the transaction.

If there is one advice I would like to offer these startups it is they do more for identity protection and fraud prevention. The notion that I have to provide personal information when I sign up for anything these days is an inconvenience, but clearly more of a risk of identity theft. This advice is especially important to those startups that are specifically targeting members below the 18-year age group. Let me be very clear. I am not implying these companies hadn't thought of security (they all had user ID and password). Today, that is inadequate. It is important that these early stage companies bake in strong authentication solutions from the beginning. It is a lot easier to do it now rather than wait until something really bad happens and you have to rethink the entire notion of secure access to your platform. After all, as responsible citizens and entrepreneurs we owe it to our future generation, to protect them and keep them from harm's way. Have you seen this CNN clip about a recent Facebook identity theft?

Strong authentication is not about strong passwords (look for an interesting experiment I did on this topic using my Facebook account in an upcoming post) Strong authentication solutions should leapfrog, in my opinion, the old paradigm of "what you know" or "what you have" and leverage new technologies and computing capabilities to authenticate and authorize users using a new paradigm of "who you are" and "what you do". The benefits of this approach is not just in being able to sleep well at night knowing you have done the right thing. By integrating these concepts into the platform, companies can build solutions that are risk-based and manage media and content rendering based on user preference and behaviors.

We at Delfigo Security have been thinking about this for several years and have developed an interesting and proven artificial intelligence based capability that does just that. We welcome the opportunity to have discussions with entrepreneurs and seasoned executives alike on how you can leverage these concepts and our research to improve your product and provide peace of mind to your members and their parents.

Bharat Nair is Vice President of Business Development at Delfigo Security,, Boston, MA. He can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by phone at 1.617.248.6501