How ‘convenient multi-factor authentication’ is key for wearables security

(c)iStock.com/LeoWolfert

Nymi, a security and authentication provider focused on the wearables space, argues in a recently published infographic that the increase in data breaches does not bode well for the enterprise.

According to the infographic, the risk of a company having its systems breached is one in five, with the average cost to a company coming in at $3.5 million.

More than nine in 10 (91%) of breaches involve stolen credentials of some sort – usernames and passwords – perhaps not a huge surprise, given that the three most common passwords are ‘123456’, ‘password’ and the slightly longer ‘12345678’. 63% of data breaches involve weak or stolen passwords.

This has serious ramifications for the emergence of wearable technology in the enterprise. A study from Centrify back in March argued that IT needs to take serious steps to protect wearable devices coming in to organisations. More than two thirds of survey respondents said they did not use login credentials.

Nymi argues security and convenience is an achievable goal; according to the infographic, 30% of organisations are investing in wearables for enterprise use, while half of firms polled say they prefer biometrics to passwords or PINs for proving their identity.

“Most enterprises know that moving to multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a great way to increase their organisation’s security posture,” a blog post reads. “Moving to MFA, however, presents challenges, including the difficulty of replacing passwords and the additional friction that may be experienced by the user. Nymi proposes a wireless, multi-factor solution in the upcoming Nymi Band: a secure, persistent authenticator,” it adds.

The Nymi Band is designed specifically for the enterprise and supports the FIDO Alliance security specifications. It aims to continuously send notifications for an authenticated employee, using a mix of Bluetooth and NFC and utilising a biometric template.

You can see the full infographic here.

 

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