Richard Law’s session at eGR Live on “How identity management can help e-gaming operators increase business value” proved to be one of the more popular at the event, with a second presentation scheduled again on 1st December. Richard was looking at the whole issue of customer value - what is the real value to your business of having an accurate, up-to-date and fully verified customer database?
Delegates to the session discussed the impact of such an asset and how this can go far beyond simply ticking the compliance box. Richard revealed that there are over 100 core elements of customer identity that we see working with clients across all sectors; this means that simply focussing on name, address and date of birth as the means of identifying and understanding customer identity is really missing the point. Using intelligence that taps into an entire framework of identity management will allow businesses to understand how to deal with individual customers most appropriately. If you would like to have a copy of Richard’s presentation please just send me a quick email. Or let us know if you would prefer us to arrange for someone to come and talk you through our ideas around identity management,
So, T-Mobile have been caught out... And actually, you know what? I am actually quite glad this story has come to light as for some time now I've been arguing that businesses and consumers alike need to wake up to the fact that personal identity information is a hugely valuable commodity. Every time we hand over our personal details to a busienss or other "unknown" we should be questioning a) why they need the information at all, b) what they will then do with it and finally, c) how they will keep it safe.
Whether the information is available through a computer system, written on an application or survey form or even photocopied from core identity documents and then stored in some warehouse somewhere, we should all be asking what will happen with it - and who else will have access to it?
What the T Mobile case may well do is make consumers aware of the actual cost in pounds and pence of the information they hand over to businesses and govt institutions on a daily basis. A report last year by Symantec revealed that sensitive information about a credit card and its holder can cost a minimum of $6 U.S. up to a maximum of $30 U.S. And email addresses are the third most sold item on the online black market.
This could in fact put more control into the consumers’ hands – but with that comes responsibility. We have long argued that if the asset we know as “identity” is properly valued, businesses will be much more careful about who can see what, who has access to which parts of the customer database (and why) and ultimately being able to justify any usage to the regulators or the customer himself. Good identity management practice has to become the goal for every business. Only in this way can we stop the increasingly lucrative trade in personal identity information
Just maybe .... the T Mobile theft will turn out to be the best thing to happen in the world of identity for a very long time!
So, we hear that Direct Line and Intelligent Finance are going to be among the casualties from the enforced restructuring of HBOS and RBS
Just last week ING announced that it plans to sell off its ING Direct franchise in the US – another Internet based operation.
Interesting to note that IF and ING Direct brands are among the more customer-friendly of their parent banks’ portfolios and you’d have to question whether selling off Internet-based banking is really a smart move today when consumers so obviously want fast, on-demand, (but secure), service.
The Internet offers unparalleled opportunity to really get to know your customer and the banking fraternity has an advantage over many sectors in that anti-money laundering rules stipulate it must confirm the identity of all new customers when they open a new account. What better way to start a relationship than with a clean sheet of authentic, verified information on which you can build a clear understanding of what the customer wants or needs or may be interested in.
Every click, every page browsed, every product page reviewed – all this information is readily available to Internet banking executives. So why don’t they use it? Why is managing customers’ identity deemed to be no more than simply verifying their personal details? Internet banking offers an unrivalled opportunity for banking staff to come right into our living rooms and get to know us. So surely getting rid of Internet based operations in favour of a more traditional banking structure with its limited opening hours and expensive customer service operations is questionable? A bank’s profitability is intrinsically linked to the identity of its customers. Internet banking offers the potential to understand that identity far better than through any other channel….. watch this space!
The Risk Management Group (www.trmg.org) recently published a discussion paper on the emerging risks of social networking. No longer is the threat simply limited to identity theft and personal privacy. “Reputational identity” is becoming an increasingly important part of understanding your customers – and social networking sites and online communities play an increasing role in providing information on who your customers are, who they are linked to, their opinions and the ultimate “trustworthiness” of their transactions.
eBay was one of the first businesses to include a reputation score that enabled buyers to judge whether or not they wanted to do business with the seller. The experience of other buyers was deemed to be the best judge of the seller’s trustworthiness. Nothing new there. Businesses have always built their reputation around customer “word of mouth”. With mass adoption of social networking sites even personal reputations can now be built, or destroyed, almost overnight. Businesses and citizens alike really need to be wary of relying too heavily on the information available – unless they know they can absolutely trust its source.
At GB we are working with clients to understand how reputational identity can be built into our identity management solutions. Identity information now goes much further than a simple name, address and date of birth. Reputational identity, along with buying and browsing behaviour, will become an increasingly important part of the knowledge store a business has on its customers. The first step is knowing you can trust the person - or the opinion - that built the reputation in the first place.