January 29, 2014 – by the findBIOMETRICS Team
The past two weeks we have been examining the results of the findBIOMETRICS Year in Review. Starting with the most memorable news items of 2013, and following up with the biggest opportunities of the year to come, we arrive at the third and final chapter in our year end analysis. As the final survey question in our 11th annual industry year in review we asked our expansive group of identity experts the following question:
What are the 3 most pressing issues facing the Identity Industry as we move into 2014?
Here’s what they had to say:
Nothing quite illustrates the current hard reality of biometrics like the first three major concerns on our list. This year, more than ever, the biometrics industry has become accountable for making sure this revolutionary technology is embraced by consumers.
First off, we see participants agreeing that countering-misinformation and providing proper education on strong authentication technologies is a major concern. In 2013, on the heels of the Apple Touch ID announcement, release and subsequent spoofing, sensationalist media had a field day editorializing unsubstantiated sentiments that colored biometrics as not just inadequate, but in some cases as practically dangerous. The industry overcame these press hiccups, emerging with more momentum pushing strong authentication into 2014. This year it will be as important as ever to communicate the correct messages to the public with a leadership voice!
Privacy issues are also a concern moving forward. The news in 2013 of the NSA’s PRISM program has everyone asking heavy questions about security and surveillance. This is an obstacle in many ways, effectively turning what is already treacherously competitive space into an ethical and PR minefield. The positive way to look at these top three obstacles: biometrics has the attention of the public, now is our chance to shine on a mainstream stage and take a leadership approach to driving the industry forward!
Tied for second place with privacy issues is the need to ease the integration of biometrics into other systems and applications. As presented in the findBIOMETRICS webinar, “The Mobile Biometrics Market Landscape” with Maxine Most from Acuity Market Intelligence, 2013 saw the restructuring of the strong authentication playing field. With this restructuring come new roles and responsibilities, namely the mass implementation of biometric solutions across a wide range of new applications. This process will be fast paced, challenging and new, but to those companies that can manage to navigate it: incredibly beneficial.
Other challenges have to do with the increased pressure that comes with an industry that has been jolted into high gear. Concerns of keeping up the pace required to viably compete in this new landscape are expressed in our results, as well as the challenges that come along with the pressure of needing to provide satisfactory end-to-end solutions. As far as obstacles go, these are ones that indicate massive activity. Lots of competition and high demand are synonymous with industries that have boomed. Biometrics is one of these.
A major plus side is that collaboration with competitors barely registers on the concern scale, indicating that the surveyed experts expect no trouble in cooperating during this dynamic period of adoption. The amount of attention and success that has fallen on strong authentication consortia and alliances throughout 2013 really puts an emphasis on how important working together is going to be as we move forward in this very explosive and finally very real industry.