Technology and IAM, yet it is not all about tech innovation

We must discuss the controversial ideas and solve the current neglected challenges

Xènia Pérez Sitjà – Conference Producer at Whitehall Media

Last week, we had the pleasure of running our Identity Management Conference. It was its 20th anniversary, and we could not be more pleased with the outcome. We discussed a variety of topics that ranged from digital transformation to IAM governance.

Our senior dedicated audience welcomed all our speakers and waited patiently to share their ideas and doubts for our panel discussion session. With the lights of USB, RBS, Kantara Initiative, the University of London, the BBC and the OpenID foundation, our event was packed with bright ideas and thought-provoking talks.

Remarkably, one of the IDM’s afternoon presentations deserves a special allusion. Carlos Trigoso – Lead Architect in Identity & Access Management at the BBC – presented a controversial, though unusually valuable keynote. With Carlos, we went through the BBC’s IAM journey, and we discussed data types and data quality in Identity Management. He offered us a detailed look into the BBC’s IAM strategy, but we went deeper into the real IAM issues only when our audience prompted him to give his genuine opinion. 

Carlos genuinely claimed: ‘if in the 90s I admitted that 70% of my difficulties were organisational, not technological; today, 99% of my battles are organisational’. Technology is pervasive and has changed many of our processes, and in the last decade, it has also enormously improved IAM strategies. Yet, today, technology is not the most critical problem in Identity Management.

While we have made giant technological steps for all cybersecurity procedures, we have forgotten some of the fundamental gears of the cybersecurity machinery: people, organisation and processes.

It is fascinating to see all the irresistible technology solutions available in the market, but the noteworthy point from the BBC’s Lead Architect resonated with the audience. IAM experts want solutions that meet their needs, and today, organisational processes need improving before we look into further technology updates.

IAM is many things. It is streamlining user experience, identity lifecycle management, security and compliance or adding an extra layer of security and visibility to privileged accounts. For every company and every IAM professional, the priorities are different, but they all have a common denominator: technology and strategies. And both of them need to work closely to elevate IAM professionals’ work to the next level. We cannot overlook one in favour of the other.  

Perhaps, not before long, we start to see changes in the market’s offer for IAM solutions.

Nevertheless, after our successful event, we envision a fruitful course for this niched field composed by dedicated IAM professionals.


Join us next March in Frankfurt

For more insightful and useful conversations on IAM. Join Whitehall Media’s prestigious 8th Identity and Access Management Europe conference as we address the increasing complexity of IAM, the value in centralisation of authentication methods, the rise in identity ownership initiatives, the role of disruptive technologies in supporting IAM processes and the latest trends and techniques being deployed to protect the enterprise eco-system from attack.