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How Okta Helped RentPath Build a Home for Advertisers

Nadav Benbarak
Group Product Marketing Manager

Whether it’s searching for an apartment or buying a new house, chances are you’ve at some point experienced one of life’s most stressful, time consuming experiences: finding a home.

One organization curing the housing headache? RentPath. The company helps consumers find their ideal home through its suite of sites, including ApartmentGuide.com, NewHomeGuide.com and Lovely; meanwhile, property managers, landlords, home builders and real estate agents manage their orders and listings – across all RentPath websites – from one central interface.

It wasn’t always this simple. Before RentPath started using Okta, all of the company’s real estate-focused sites existed separately, requiring advertisers to log in and manage listings individually within each siloed service. To consolidate user identities and to create a central interface for customers, the RentPath team initially built its own solution based on LDAP, but this infrastructure lacked efficiency and functionality.

“We were maintaining LDAP and providing a little too much support and not enough support at the same time,” said Dan Morris, senior director of architecture and engineering at RentPath. “We were using our own resources, but never enough to get the level of functionality that we were interested in.”

RentPath decided to abandon its maintenance-heavy, homegrown solution and turn toward a SaaS authentication model. Using the Universal Directory and LDAP integration agent on the Okta Identity Platform, RentPath was able to seamlessly migrate authentication and single sign-on to the cloud.

All customer identities now exist centrally in the Okta Universal Directory, so advertisers only need a single username, password and session to access a series of otherwise isolated services like listings management and support tools. The user lifecycle and authentication are handled entirely via API, which gives RentPath full control over the UI.

By relying on Okta, RentPath worries less about the identity layer and can devote more energy to building new features for customers.

“If we’re engineering the security layer then we’re focusing less time on the thing that differentiates us as a provider of services,” said Morris. “The fact that I really haven’t had to worry about Okta either from a development or operational standpoint is one of the best testaments that I can give toward its value. If you’re dealing with a security system, the highest praise you can give it is that you don’t have any concerns.”

With one central identity service, RentPath can easily acquire any number of new real estate focused sites, and integrate them into the RentPath network to differentiate itself further as a provider of advertising services. Meanwhile, we at Okta take care of identity management in the background – and look forward to seeing what the future holds for renters and homebuyers everywhere.

Read about the unified Okta experience in our RentPath case study and learn more about authentication by joining our “Security Starts with Authentication” webinar on Wednesday, August 12.

Nadav Benbarak
Group Product Marketing Manager

Nadav is Group Marketing Manager, Vertical Solutions at Okta. Prior to Okta, Nadav helped to build Google’s Adwords business as a product manager and product marketer. Nadav earned a BS from UC Berkeley and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

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