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Authentify's "When Everyone Knows Your Username and Password Pub" a Hit with RSA Conference 2013 Attendees.

Author: John Zurawski | Vice President of Marketing, Authentify
John Zurawski John Zurawski

Executing a plan that was conceived last July, Authentify unveiled the concept exhibit, "When Everyone Knows Your Username and Password Pub" at the 2013 RSA Conference in San Francisco last week. The idea was to make it clear that when your username and password are compromised your account can still be protected by Authentify's brand of 2-Factor Authentication. Signage in the 'pub' designed to look like championship boxing events made it clear that out-of-band authentication would defeat key stroke loggers, Zeus, Eurograbber and their offspring.

The wood toned flooring, brick walls, bar stools, dart game and beverages combined to offer attendees a congenial spot to pause for a moment and discuss their views on information security and authentication practices. More than 1000 RSA attendees passed through the When Everyone Knows Your Username and Password Pub.

By far and away, the most interest from attendees was in the mobile space and the app end points used for out-of-band or dual channel authentication. Some newcomers at the conference announced various flavors of new authentication apps. Time and again for an attendee who inquired "Well, what about 'this' new vendor and their app?" I explained a fundamental difference. It's not that difficult to build a cool looking app to support your smart phone enabled user base. Unfortunately, half the consumer base is still armed with feature phones, or laptops, or older tablets or even, heaven forbid – a landline telephone. Does the new kid on the block have a workflow to support all of those as well? I heard the comment, "Oh yeah, I forgot about that part of it," quite a bit.

Authentify has been at this for a while. We introduced our phone-based out-of-band services at RSA 2001. Authentify deployed its first biometric application in 2004. Our first foray into the "app space" was at Finnovate Fall in September 2011. That seems almost ancient in the app happy climate of today, but many of our clients need to support much broader user bases along with the leading edge. Offering a consistent user authentication experience across that user base is much harder than adding the next cool feature to our app end points.

Either way, the Authenti-Pub was a hit, and many of the attendees polled felt they'd look for us if we brought it back next year. For those of you who visited thanks for stopping by! For those of you who missed it, we'll see you next year!!

 

Smartphone penetration in the US and worldwide
The Authentify Exhibit during the 2013 RSA Conference.

Smartphone penetration in the US and worldwide
The Authentify Exhibit during the 2013 RSA Conference. [Fight Poster featured in booth]

Smartphone penetration in the US and worldwide
The Authentify Exhibit during the 2013 RSA Conference. [Menu Board featured in booth]