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A Mobile World With An Identity Core: Okta Launches New Mobility Features

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At Andreessen Horowitz’s recent annual investor meeting, Benedict Evans delivered a presentation titled “mobile is eating the world.” In it, he pointed out that mobile isn’t just “mobile” anymore – we use mobile devices everywhere, not just while we’re on the move. At Okta, we’ve always been very mindful about simplifying and securing the end-to-end enterprise workflows that IT admins and end-users experience, and these workflows are increasingly executed on mobile devices. This is why we launched our Okta Mobility Management (OMM) service last November. By integrating identity with mobility management, we’ve been able to simplify the user experience while improving security in the mobile-cloud world.

Since the launch of OMM in November, our team has been regularly releasing new mobile capabilities that are easy to administer and intuitive for end users to consume. Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of a new set of updates to OMM and Okta Verify, our MFA solution.

The first update is Okta Verify with Push, which simplifies the end user authentication experience by sending an actionable Push Notification to any device – iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Android or Windows Phone – so users can easily authenticate by pressing “Approve.” There’s no need to hunt for a 6-digit code to be manually entered – now you can just touch “Approve” and you’re in. And if users enable Okta Verify with Push on the Apple Watch, the authentication process is even simpler – they don’t even have to pull out their phones! Take a look at how it works:

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A Day In The Life of Bill Losch: Okta’s CFO Puts Money On The Cloud

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IT teams are responsible for finding, implementing and ensuring technologies are adopted by their organization. But technology decisions are no longer solely under the jurisdiction of that team or the CTO. Today, CFOs are responsible for evaluating technology purchases and assessing a return on investment. Whether that’s calculated through employee productivity increases or financial savings by eliminating outdated software or needing one less employee to sit at a help desk, the CFO needs to determine whether it’s worth the investment.

As it happens, our CFO is well-versed in both cloud-based technologies and making decisions that impact a company and its investors for years to come. We decided to sit down with Bill Losch to find out what a typical day at Okta is like, and to provide some color to the advantages of implementing and partnering with cloud technologies.

How long have you been at Okta, and what first attracted you to the company?

leadership_billI joined Okta in June 2013, so it’s been almost two years. While I had experience working at larger companies – DreamWorks Animation, Yahoo! Inc. and Universal Studios, to name a few you might recognize – I first and foremost wanted to work at a technology company that was solving a real painpoint for companies and consumers.

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Instead Of Banning BYOD, Enable It Securely

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image (1)In a document released this year by British intelligence and security organisation, GCHQ, it was revealed that the firm has called for firms to ban BYOD. In the report, the organisation claims staff represent the “weakest link in the security chain” and can, whether it is intentional or not, be responsible for leaking data to foreign espionage agencies.

A knee-jerk reaction to ban BYOD is not an effective solution given our knowledge of the emergence of “Shadow IT” and the increase in productivity BYOD offers employees. While humans are undoubtedly the weakest link in the security chain, policies, tools and education can go a long way in mitigating the risk that comes with the with the cloud revolution and BYOD. The right question to ask isn’t, “how can we stop employees from BYOD?,” it’s “how can we give our employees simple policies and tools to help them be productive and secure at work?.” Security and productivity don’t have to be an ‘either/or.’

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From Chicago and New York to London: Hops and Highlights from Okta’s Identity & Mobility Forum

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Over the past few months we’ve been traveling the US to share our vision for the cloud and mobile enterprise with the attendees of our Identity & Mobility Forums. We hit up Chicago’s City Winery in May, welcoming IT leaders to discuss their various cloud and mobile strategies over some wine (or, in my case, the healthy selection of Illinois craft beer). Then it was off to The Standard High Line in New York City to hear from CIOs about how they’re securely connecting their employees, customers and partners and freeing up IT to be more creative while networking in the Standard Biergarten.

Now we’re gearing up to head across the pond for our third Identity & Mobility Forum (and some warm beer) at the Oxo Tower Wharf in London on Tuesday, July 14. For those of you considering attending, we’ve included a short recap video from NYC below, and thought we’d share some highlights from our first two events to convince you:

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What Apple’s iOS 9 Updates at WWDC Mean For Okta’s Customers

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It shouldn’t be news to anyone that Apple held its annual developer’s conference, WWDC, last week here in San Francisco. These events have become synonymous with awe-inspiring keynotes and product launches. They interest everyone, from music junkies – naturally since Apple Music was in the spotlight this year – to companies like Okta that are investing heavily in mobile.

We, in particular, were thrilled to learn that Apple will make updates in its upcoming iOS operating system release so we can improve the security and user experience of our mobile solutions. The public beta begins in July and the official launch will be in the fall.

This year a few upcoming iOS 9 releases in particular have us (almost) jumping out of our seats. Here’s what they mean for our customers and partners:

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Okta Is Hot Property! – Leading Australian Real Estate Advertising Group Chooses Okta

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REA Group (ASX:REA) is an ASX listed enterprise that owns and operates the leading real estate and commercial property advertising sites in Australia, realestate.com.au and realcommercial.com.au. With over 800 employees globally, REA Group also has property websites in Italy, Luxembourg and China, and strategic investments in property sites in Asia and North America. The Group aims to make property simple, efficient and stress-free for real estate agents and consumers, whether they are buying or renting or researching the market.logo-rea-group

In 2011, REA Group started the move from on-premises to cloud technology. The REA team was proactive about adopting new technologies to support their staff and sourcing a range of tools and apps to make their jobs easy. However, by the start of 2013, employees became frustrated at the need to remember all the different passwords and URLs to access apps and services in the cloud. REA Group decided it needed to build or find a tool to make it easy for staff to have access to apps from anywhere.

Enter Okta!

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Security is Product Management: A Podcast with Nadav Benbarak

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Our very own Nadav Benbarak recently sat down with Alpha UX’s Mike Fishbein for his “This is Product Management” podcast series to share his perspective on security opportunities, balancing user experience with security and what organizations can do to be more secure.

You can the find entire podcast below – but if you don’t have 30 minutes to listen in full, here are five highlights:

NadavBenbarak1) Make It Secure By Making It Easy: Making sure the right people have access to the right things at the right times is a tangible problem and one many companies run up against each day. While everyone acknowledges the problem, it’s much harder to solve. Because most people have hundreds of applications – and limited mental capacity – there’s a natural tendency to reuse passwords, inherently making everything less secure. There is a big opportunity for companies to apply new forms of authentication to reduce the burden on users and make security, not only usable, but also effective.

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There Can Be Only One: Okta Named Sole Leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Identity and Access Management as a Service (IDaaS)

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Today, we’re honored to be named the sole leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Identity and Access Management as a Service (IDaaS), and a leader for the second consecutive year. This recognition is a testament to the hard work of Okta’s team, the foresight of our founders, Todd and Frederic, and the trust that our customers place in us every day.

It is exceedingly rare to have a sole leader in a Magic Quadrant, and we believe that our unrelenting focus on execution and customer success has led to this recognition. You can find a complimentary copy of the report here.

IDaaSMQ

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A New Reason to Visit Las Vegas: Oktane15 Call for Speakers Now Open

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oceansLas Vegas has quite the reputation – incredible shows, adventurous nightlife, Danny Ocean. But it’s also home to some amazing events, such as CES, The Motor Trend International Auto Show, The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, Electric Daisy Carnival, The Greek Food Festival and, this year, Oktane15.

For our third annual customer and partner summit, forwarding-thinking IT leaders and application developers will converge at MGM’s ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. And while we can supply enough coffee to counteract any late nights at the casino, the success of our conference comes down to the quality of the content presented and the discussion that follows it – and for that, we look to experts like you. Today, we encourage you to submit presentations and speaking abstracts for our 2015 Call For Speakers.

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Embracing The Cloud: Why Overstock.com Went Shopping for Okta

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Whether you’re looking for a new pair of shoes, a bed-in-a-bag or maybe even a new wall-mounted ironing board, chances are you can find it on Overstock.com, where more than one million products are sold. Not only is its product catalog expansive, but leading online retailer Overstock.com also promises to deliver the best online deals, so customers don’t have to spend their own time investigating discounts, promotions and prices.

But competitive pricing is just one benefit of shopping on Overstock.com. The company continuously innovates to improve the way consumers make purchases and suppliers distribute products. To better serve customers and improve the shopping experience, Overstock.com’s 1,500 employees rely on a myriad of cloud applications from Workday to WebEx and ServiceNow. In order to manage and securely access the growing list of cloud and mobile applications, Overstock.com turned to Okta.

We sat down with Carter Lee, Overstock.com’s CTO, to find out how Okta has shaped the company’s use of cloud technology.

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