Around the World, Consumers and Businesses Turn to VeriSign for Online Identity Protection
30 October, 2008 - As consumers wrestle with Internet security concerns in the face of recent high-profile account break-ins, more online businesses than ever are shielding their customers from e-criminals with identity protection services from VeriSign, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRSN), the leading provider of Internet infrastructure for the networked world.
From financial institutions and merchants to government agencies, organisations the world over are deploying VeriSign® Identity Protection (VIP) services to thwart the efforts of fraudsters whose phishing schemes can trick consumers into revealing sensitive private information. VeriSign Identity Protection service's one-time-passwords (OTP) are one element of a layered security approach. Other layers include Web site security brought by an Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificate, fraud detection services to monitor anomalies on the back end, and consumer education to arm end users with information.
Today VeriSign spotlighted several new VIP Network members, a growing reseller channel for Identity and Authentication Services, and new data that suggests consumers continue to find VIP strong authentication valuable and easy to use. VIP Services is a comprehensive suite of identity protection and authentication services designed to strengthen and protect consumers' online identities.
VIP Network Adds Members Worldwide
Demand among consumers for stronger safeguards from e-criminals led dozens of organisations to join the VIP Network in the past year. These customers have signed up for various credentials from tokens supplied by ActivIdentity to innovative credit-card-format tokens from InCard Technologies (NASDAQ: INVC).
- American Bankers Association, the largest bank trade association in the U.S.
- AWA Credit Union Ltd, the Credit Union for ALCOA employees and their families Australia wide
- Central Murray Credit Union, a small-medium sized financial institution based in rural Australia
- DocLocker, an Australia-based provider of secure online document storage and sharing services for businesses worldwide
- Indusval Multistock, a 40 year old, successful banking and brokerage firm in Brazil
- Joyo Bank, a large banking institution in Japan
- Maitland Mutual Building Society, a regionally based financial institution in Australia providing savings solutions and loan products to its members
- Morgan Street Document Systems, the premier provider of personalised, web-based, document management services to high-net-worth individuals and their advisors
- South West Credit Union, servicing the communities of South West Victoria, Australia
- U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid - providing financial assistance to students for higher education
- VietUnion, a Vietnam-based provider of online payment service Payoo
- Water ISAC, a private, not-for-profit organisation authorised by the U.S. Congress and established by utilities to provide information necessary to secure water systems
Membership in the VIP Network allows online businesses to use the same VIP credentials on various other network members' sites, including AOL, eBay, PayPal and many others.
Ease-of-Use Drives Popularity
With a growing selection of credential options, consumers continue to report that use of one-time password with VIP is both valuable and easy to use. At eBay Live! in June, 689 attendees responded to a survey about their experiences with the PayPal Security Key, a type of VIP security credential that provides a one-time password (OTP) for every transaction. During an online transaction, this password is entered into a user interface with other information (such as user name and static PIN) for multifactor authentication.
A third of respondents said they use the PayPal Security Key, and nearly three-quarters of users reported that their PayPal key is easy to use. What's more, most respondents said they wanted to enjoy VIP protection with a variety of services - including online banking, shopping, gaming and stock trading - while nearly half hoped to use their token to access health care services.
"Before I started using my token, someone was breaking into my account every four to six weeks," said Janice Lindgren, an eBay seller of sports memorabilia. "I'm so glad I came across the Security Key last year during eBay Live. I feel safe when I use it. My husband and I aren't computer experts - I'm 63 and he's 71 - but this is easy. I previously had to change my password constantly to keep others out of my account, but since I started using the PayPal Security Key, I haven't had to change it once."
Growing Partners Extend Reach of VIP
Enhancements to VeriSign's sales and delivery channel for VIP also has extended the network's market presence worldwide. VeriSign recently added to its channel and strategic partner ranks:
- Blitz IT Consultants Pte Ltd in Vietnam
- Senior Solutions in Brazil
- Scitum and Netrix in Mexico
- Bharti Airtel in India
- iTrusChina in China
- MSCTrustgate in Malaysia
And in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, VeriSign launched a new program aimed at recruiting at least one anchor partner for the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Italy. Other efforts are underway to ensure that VIP is represented via a robust and far-reaching ecosystem, particularly within the financial, retail, social networking and gaming markets.
More Credential Options for Users
The PayPal Security Key is one of several convenient types of credentials accepted by VIP Network members. Because VIP is compliant with OATH (Open Authentication Organisation) specifications, consumers can leverage credentials in many form factors designed to fit an individual's needs and usage preferences.
VeriSign offers traditional VIP credentials from various different manufacturers such as Vasco, ActivIdentity, and Gemalto, and software based tokens that work on Java and BREW-based mobile phones. In addition, VeriSign's SMS credentials, which enable OTPs to be sent via a text message to a mobile phone, are now live. Finally, VeriSign offers credit card sized form factors for OTP authentication from InCard Technologies.
"As recent high-profile account break-ins on bank accounts and email accounts suggest, the days when simply entering a username and password was enough to protect consumers online are long gone," said Fran Rosch, vice president, Identity and Authentication Services at VeriSign. "The VIP Network provides an essential and convenient layer of defense for the millions of consumers who rely on online businesses to provide a safe and secure experience every time they log on."
The unique VIP Network allows consumers to use a single security device to authenticate themselves across any VIP-enabled Web site. This makes it more convenient for users to adopt two-factor authentication into their online routine. For online businesses, joining the VIP Network helps distribute the costs of stronger authentication, thus accelerating its inevitable acceptance in the global marketplace. For more information, visit http://www.verisign.com/authentication/consumer-authentication/.
VeriSign is the trusted provider of Internet infrastructure services for the networked world. Billions of times each day, VeriSign helps companies and consumers all over the world engage in communications and commerce with confidence. Additional news and information about the company is available at www.verisign.com/in/.
Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause VeriSign's actual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, the uncertainty of future revenue and profitability and potential fluctuations in quarterly operating results due to such factors as the inability of VeriSign to successfully develop and market new products and services and customer acceptance of any new products or services, including VeriSign's Extended Validation SSL Certificates and solutions, the possibility that VeriSign's announced new services may not result in additional customers, profits or revenues; and increased competition and pricing pressures. More information about potential factors that could affect the company's business and financial results is included in VeriSign's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006 and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. VeriSign undertakes no obligation to update any of the forward-looking statements after the date of this press release.
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