In Celebration of Vittorio Bertocci

Unforgettable. Remarkable. Impactful. Authentic. Passionate. Legendary. Generous.

These are just a few words that echo in conversations and stories about Vittorio. Of course, "That hair!" is a repeat exclamation, eliciting tales of hair product recommendations and best practices. But Vittorio was so much more than can be summarized in a list.

Vittorio was larger than life. His is an inspiring story of humble beginnings and a testament to what passion, drive, and grit can build. He was a titan who powerfully shaped the identity industry and won hearts while he did it. While his time with us could never be long enough, there is no shortage of things to celebrate about Vittorio Bertocci.

The Man

Born in a small village in Italy as the 10th child of a janitor, Vittorio's journey to the international stage was hard-earned. He worked tirelessly to put himself through school, and with the love and support of his family and wife, he steadily grew his influence and expertise to global acclaim.

Vittorio Bertocci

Vittorio was known for a lot of things in the identity industry. First and foremost, of course, was his technical depth: very few people in the world knew identity as well as Vittorio. In many ways, he helped create identity as an industry rather than as an afterthought. Vittorio sat on the Board of Directors of the OpenID Foundation, authored two IETF RFCs that became part of the OAuth 2.0 protocol, worked closely with the FIDO Alliance, and was hugely influential on Auth0 and Okta’s product roadmaps. 

But even among the leading experts in the industry, Vittorio stood out not only for his expertise in identity but for his passion and drive to "level up the world's identity IQ." He cared deeply about teaching the rest of the world about identity and why he found it so important. In the early days, he wrote books. Later, he created and hosted a podcast, authored blogs, and spent a lot of time traveling around the globe to major industry events, speaking, selecting talks, and helping others improve their content. He was driven by the idea that not only should he hold himself to a high standard, but he should also help everyone else raise the bar. Vittorio couldn’t fathom a world where people built identity products without understanding the identities they were protecting. He helped build the machinery behind the login box because he saw so acutely the people who were in front of it. 

His impact and legacy

A veteran in the identity industry, Vittorio had a lengthy career with Microsoft, working with Fortune 100 and Global 100 companies. He contributed to the inception and launch of Microsoft's claims-based platform components (Windows Identity Foundation and ADFS, ADAL and MSAL SDKs, and ASP.NET middleware).

At Auth0 and Okta, Vittorio was a long-standing contributor and thought leader in all aspects of the identity industry and domain. His forward-thinking commentary made him an in-demand voice at industry events worldwide, including Identiverse, BUILD, PDC, TechEd, Cloud Identity Summit, and many others.

Vittorio struck an unusual balance of pragmatism without veering away from doing what is right. In his countless panels, interviews, and general discussions, he always defended the need to protect the privacy of every customer, user, consumer, citizen, or whatever other persona identity technology is meant to protect.

Vittorio's impact on colleagues and the entire identity community has been tremendous. His work lives on in standards and protocols, books, podcasts, and presentations to help educate and advance the identity industry for years to come. The following is a small representation of Vittorio's work and influence. 

Standards, protocols, and resources

Books, publications, and training materials

Podcasts and interviews

“I met Vittorio for the first time in Microsoft’s Building 20, a place where magic happened. This was in 2008. In this case, he was the magician. That first master class in identity on a whiteboard led to co-authoring a book with him, then another one, and later on to founding Auth0. I finally convinced him to join Auth0, and the rest is history. You were always so generous with your knowledge, wisdom, and humor. I am so grateful for all the moments we shared along these extraordinary years. Grazie carissimo.”  

In the spirit of giving

Two causes of importance to Vittorio and his family are higher education for low-income students and pancreatic cancer research. If you feel inspired to do so, you can donate in his honor to: