Following the sleepy post-Christmas lull, January offers us the perfect opportunity to look to the year ahead – and it’s already shaping up to be one to remember.
Although we don’t have a crystal ball with which we can accurately predict what 2019 will bring for cybersecurity, technology, and identity, we canlet you in on the developments our team are excited about. We hope you’ll tag along for the ride!
1. A Passworldless Future, Now
If we’re going to leave anything behind in 2018, let it be poor passwords. SplashData has already given us all the usual annual chuckle by revealing the ’25 Worst Passwords of 2018’(yes, 123456 takes the top spot once again) but, in reality, it’s no laughing matter when sensitive customer data is at risk.
That’s why, for some time now, Microsoft has been verbally waging war on the password, and rightly so; after all, as threats and technology both evolve, it makes sense to change up our approach to identity and access management.
Although it may seem hard to imagine proving your identity with the traditional password, the tech giant has already made huge strides by leveraging multi-factor authentication and new innovations in identity. We’ll be living in a ‘password-less world’ before you know it.
2. Tighter Security
Last year, data breaches and cyberattacks all clamoured for column inches, to the point where it seemed like personal data being exposed was a daily occurrence. Combined with the presence of GDPR, security became a hot topic in 2018, and we’re hoping that 2019 sees a re-evaluation of how organisations keep themselves secure.
Although bigger incidents – such as Bupa’s wayward employee or the British Airways hack– took the main focus in 2018, it’s important to note that other industries and smaller organisations are still at risk moving into the New Year.
Research released by PwC, for example, showed that 82% of the top 100 law firms in the UK have expressed concern around cyber. This means that 2019 will be crunch time, with legal being just one industry likely taking security seriously.
3. More Webinars from Us
Our team love any opportunity to add a new speciality to their skillset, and learning is certainly part of the job in an ever-evolving landscape such as identity and access management. More than developing their own knowledge, however, they love helping others to understand areas our team are passionate about.
In 2018, this translated into hosting webinars, covering topics such as challenges facing the JML process in NHS trusts, as well as co-hosting webinars with Microsoft. In 2019, we’ll be continuing that trend, with regular webinars that put our people in the spotlight planned. Be sure to keep an eye out on social media to save a place!
4. Supporting AchieveHer
If 2018 was the year of shedding a spotlight on gender disparity in the workplace, 2019 will surely be the year of making changes – and we’re proud to be on the front line. To that end, we’ve partnered with Itsherstory cic, lending our support to the AchieveHer program.
AchieveHer is a hugely worthwhile initiative, tackling an issue that is all too familiar to women who have taken a break from their career: the hurdles standing between them and returning to work after having children, caring for relatives, or taking a sabbatical.
The program aims to foster important discussion around the subject, as well as pairing women up with a business offering a ‘returnship’, helping talented individuals to return to work. Identity Experts is proud to be welcoming a returnee to the business, and to be continually pushing for change.
5. Supporting Mind
When it comes to supporting mental health in the workplace, we send a strong message to our employees that it’s OK to not be OK. We spent the last quarter of 2018 implementing new changes to our company culture which ensure our employees feel supported and looked-after. For 2019, we wanted to see that change happen outside our own four walls.
That’s why we’ve chosen to dedicate our fundraising efforts to Mind, an inspiring charity working to raise awareness around mental health, as well as offering a helping hand to those suffering in silence.
The team are only just gearing up, but expect to see updates soon as we kick-start our efforts and get the ball rolling towards our target of raising £10,000. Wish us luck!
6. ESR Connect
At the tail end of 2018, we launched our newest product, ESR Connect. Our team of experts have worked diligently to create a solution which will enable NHS trusts to simplify their joiner/mover/leaver process, and will facilitate direct communication between the Electronic Staff Records (ESR) system and their identity solution.
Over the course of the next twelve months, we’re looking forward to seeing how ESR Connect continues to change the way NHS trusts operate, as well as charting its journey to being one of our cornerstone products.
7. Welcoming New Members to Our Team
Finally, we’re committed this year to continuing our growth. Already, we’ve welcomed two critical new hires in strategy and consultancy, and we’re excited to be introducing more experts to our ranks as the year develops.
As you can imagine with a raft of new hires, the company culture begins to evolve and it’ll be fascinating to experience such a change and see for ourselves what each member of the team can bring to the table.
All in all, we have quite the year ahead of us with plenty to look forward to – even with well-publicised challenges on the horizon for all of us (we won’t use the “B” word in this blog, honest).
What’s important as we start our foray into 2019 is to keep focused on the prize, and to use the months ahead as an opportunity to impress and leave our mark; and that’s exactly what we plan to do.
Happy New Year!