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Why you need to protect your identity in the digital world

The tech sector has the power, the capacity, and the responsibility to strengthen the cybersecurity and resilience of the critical services.

Photo: © AFP
Photo: © AFP

The issue of identity management, and specifically authentication, has become critical to protect businesses and digital lives of individuals. However, many weaknesses remain in terms of anti-fraud measures.

To address some of the concerns around the world, Identity Management Day has been organised. The event takes place on Tuesday, April 12, 2022. The aim is to provide tips for how businesses and individuals can stay secure.  The aim is also to help leverage the support of vendors in the identity security space.

As sign of the importance, Jo Biden recently said: “I urge our private sector partners to harden your cyber defenses immediately by implementing the best practices we have developed together over the last year. You have the power, the capacity, and the responsibility to strengthen the cybersecurity and resilience of the critical services and technologies on which Americans rely.”

To support the statement, the White House issued a fact sheet. Leading this was a statement urging companies to “mandate the use of multi-factor authentication on your systems to make it harder for attackers to get onto your system.”

The company Yubico has provided some detail relating to cybersecurity and identity management to mark the event. This includes warning companies and individuals about increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks like phishing and ransomware (especially given an anticipated uptick in cyberattacks from other nation states amid the current global climate).

Chad Thunberg, CISO at Yubico tells Digital Journal why these things matter. This includes the implications surrounding economic activity: “Small businesses generate 44 percent of the U.S. economic activity. Many of them are a vital part of the overall supply chain and partner ecosystem of larger organizations.”

This means, says Thunberg: “With attackers increasing their focus on the supply chain, it is imperative that these small and medium sized businesses adopt fundamental and important security practices including the use of phishing-resistant multi-factor authentication protocols, like fast identification online (FIDO), that are available as part of many Single Sign-On solutions as indicated by the “Sign in with” buttons.”

Thunberg further recommends that businesses “strongly consider using cloud data storage to mitigate ransomware threats and a password vault for those sites that have yet to adopt modern authentication.”

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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