HID Global is watching five key developing trends in the new year, highlighted by growing market demand for a mobile-centric and more satisfying user experience that the company believes will be the primary driver for security technology innovation in 2016. Customers will increasingly aspire to a comprehensive secure identity experience for their users, which can provide the foundation for more flexible, adaptable solutions in a new era of interconnected digital identities and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Following are the trends to watch in 2016 that will point to a more mobile and connected experience, ongoing advancements in privacy protection, and broader adoption of best practices for solution deployment.

Trend #1: “Mobilizing” security will make it more pervasive and personalized.

As we do more with our phones and increasingly demand anywhere/anytime on-line access, there is the opportunity to better protect these activities while creating a more satisfying, mobile-centric security experience at home, in the office, on the road and on-line. Over the past several years we’ve begun to turn phones into ID cards, keys and computer logon tokens while plugging security holes that mobility had initially introduced. Moving forward, continuing advancements will enable a new, more secure identity lifestyle built around the convenience and ubiquity of our ever-present mobile devices:

  • Improvements in deployment, onboarding, management and professional service options will help accelerate mobile access adoption, increasing user confidence and capabilities across a growing range of applications.
  • It will become even easier for travelers to open hotel doors, for college students to enter dorm rooms, and for on-line bank customers to transact with their phones.
  • Computer and network logon will move even more seamlessly to phones, tablets and laptops.
  • Visiting healthcare workers, patrolling guards, field inspection teams and factory workers will touch their phones to RFID tags to log their presence and securely monitor processes in the Internet of Things (IoT).
  • Wearables and other mobile products will join the device ecosystem, giving users even more choices and flexibility.
  • Putting secure identities on smartphones will also have the potential to radically change citizen ID systems. Mobile devices can act as readers and eliminate expensive infrastructure, while paving the way for numerous new national ID applications beyond simple visual identification.

Trend #2: Security will move to a much greater focus on the user experience.

Users will continue to be the most important elements and yet weakest links in any security strategy, putting themselves and the people they work and transact with at risk when they don’t do their part. Advancements in the security experience will play a vital role in closing this gap between security planning and user compliance.

  • Security technology will no longer define office habits and personal lifestyles but adapt to them while empowering new capabilities, making it easier – and even attractive -- for users to comply with requirements.
  • Users will have more options for presenting secure identities for authentication. Organizations are now interested having the choice to use any combination of ID cards, phones or other mobile device, or biometric factor such as a fingerprint. The coming years will bring even more options.
  • Traditional authentication elements like passwords, challenge/response questions and logon tokens will disappear, to be replaced by better ways of securing mobile banking channels, authenticating to corporate data, apps and web services, and accessing healthcare and other sensitive personal information.

Trend #3: A new era of secure connected identities will not only make us safer but fuel innovation in how we work, shop and play.

After two decades of advances from simple visual ID badges to smart cards, standards-based access control systems and mobile ID solutions, the industry will now enter its next new chapter: connected identities for a connected world that are used on a variety of devices for a growing range of existing and new applications.

  • There will be greater reliance on many digital versions of our identity, used in many different ways across all walks of life.
  • We will connect our identities to an expanding solution ecosystem for secure access to doors, data and cloud-based services and applications, accelerating the need for unified identity management systems and processes.
  • The more we use these connected identities to secure so many aspects of our lives, the more it will fuel innovation in everything from the way we bank and purchase items to how our businesses, hospitals, schools, manufacturing plants and other facilities are built and operated. This will also create new business models and monetization opportunities.
  • Multi-layered security strategies will be critical for protecting these connected identities.
  • Biometrics will offer the potential to eliminate digital identity theft while making security even more convenient. This is the only form of authentication that binds digital identities to the individual, determining who is actually using the system while verifying whether he or she is the true, legitimate identity owner for a myriad of new mobile and on-line applications.

Trend #4: There will be closer attention to privacy issues in an increasingly connected and mobile-first world.

A growing category of business and consumer products and services will be steadily collecting information about users, creating privacy and security vulnerabilities not only in cyberspace but in the physical world as well.

  • The IoT will put even greater pressure on privacy. In a world where everything is connected – objects with other objects, the IoT with other networks -- everything is potentially at risk.
  • And as the IoT evolves, identity will expand beyond people and their personal identity information to the identity of objects and their authenticity.
  • Protecting personal information will become a critical focus area in the design, deployment and lifecycle of each and every interconnected device, service and application.

Trend #5: Security policies and deployment best practices will be as important as technology advancements.

More organizations will realize even the most advanced technology is only as secure as the policies and deployment best practices that support them.

  • The first over-the-air securely provisioned U.S. mobile driver licenses will showcase this challenge, highlighting policy considerations that must accompany the use of secure, authenticated digital identities on smartphones and other mobile devices for issuing, carrying and presenting these and other government credentials.
  • Cost barriers that previously impeded best practices will be overcome as the value of these investments increases. For example, organizations are more likely to deploy physical access control systems if the same solution for opening doors can also be used for cafeteria purchases, computer logon, time-and-attendance systems and other applications.
  • Vulnerability holes will be plugged as organizations move beyond older technologies to the latest solutions while also adopting best practices for policy and deployment.
  • The roles of security administrators will evolve to a more holistic perspective across the entire organization. Facility and information security teams will collaborate even more tightly on all aspects of designing, implementing and maintaining robust security capabilities.
  • The benefits of Public/Private Key Infrastructure, or PKI, validation used by federal agencies and in other high-security IT applications will extend to the door and to commercial installations. The latest credential management solutions will accelerate this process, enabling organizations to issue and manage all of these cards with a single system.
  • The growing realization that breaches are inevitable will turn attention to controlling what happens after an incident. This includes creating even more robust digital credentials that combine biometric and other data elements so that stolen identities are rendered useless to anyone but the legitimate owner.

HID Global’s Seos® technology provides the foundation for advancing these trends, making it possible for organizations to confidently incorporate mobile solutions and empower their users with more application than ever before.