Posts Tagged: Authentication

Live Webinar: Balancing Privacy and Personalization with Identity 3.0

Posted On: Filed Under: Data Privacy, Internet of Things, Personalization

The results of Gigya’s 2015 State of Consumer Privacy & Personalization report reveal that, while social login usage continues to skyrocket, consumers are also showing a marked interest in next-generation authentication methods to meet growing demands for privacy and personalization.


Join us as Gigya’s Craig Ferrara discusses the rise of Identity 3.0 and what it means for businesses, including:

  • Apple IDs as a potential new form of third-party digital identity
  • Consumer interest in biometrics
  • Using social identities to connect the IoT

About Our Speaker

CraigAs Gigya’s Director of Creative Services, Craig manages the Creative Services and User Interface Design team. Craig is responsible for designing the look and feel of the integration of Gigya’s technology, as well as providing consultation that Gigya offers clients post go-live to improve analytics and adoption. 

At the end of the webinar, you will have the opportunity to submit your own privacy, personalization, and Identity 3.0-related questions to Craig.

The webinar will be held on Thursday, July 30th, 2015 at 8:00 a.m. PT. Please click here to register.

We hope you can join us!

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3 Tips to Turn Anonymous Users into Known Customers

Posted On: Filed Under: Customer Experience, Customer Identity, Data Integration No Comments on 3 Tips to Turn Anonymous Users into Known Customers

To reach customers with a level of relevance that grows conversions and loyalty, marketers must understand their users. We’re not talking about observing anonymous on-site behaviors and researching general browsing habits – we’re talking about really learning who they are.

Prompting users to self-identify by registering and logging in on your sites and applications is necessary, but easier said than done. Here are three strategies to help you convert unknown users, eliminate reliance on anonymous data and get to know your customers more granularly.

Create Points of Engagement

Requiring users to identify themselves and provide you with their personal information requires some incentive. The ability to seamlessly and directly interact with your brand and site community encourages users to not just register for your site, but also to log in and engage time and again. Consider these notable engagement statistics:

  • 32% of companies using ratings & reviews saw a registration conversion increase of more than 50%
  • 30% of brands using comments were able to boost registrations by 25-49%
  • 30% of companies using gamification improved registration conversion rates by upwards of 50%

Engagement is only as valuable as the insight it generates. Providing site visitors with ways to interact directly with your brand results in a greater quantity and quality of data to guide the creation of personalized user experiences, more focused content strategies, lucrative product roadmaps and much more.

Ratings and Reviews Gigya Social Engagement

Implement Single Sign-On (SSO)

Driving registration flows across a single web property can be difficult, but for brands with multiple domains, this challenge can be two, three or even ten times more difficult. Single Sign-On (SSO) allows users to authenticate just once and move seamlessly across your web properties.

SSO syncs logged-in states as users navigate from one of your web properties to another, or to a third-party application that sits within your site. Allowing users to leverage the same identity across domains facilitates a single, complete customer view, as well as simplifies back-end identity data management for enterprises.

For example, as properties of a larger parent company, Food Network, HGTV and DIY Network enable users to log in on just one of these sites, and then unlock the ability to navigate across all three properties while maintaining their logged-in states.

Link Anonymous Data to Known Users

By employing cookies across web properties, brands have compiled masses of anonymous user data. While this data gives some insight into behavioral trends for site visitors, it fails to uncover the interests and identities driving these actions. What’s more, device-specific data is becoming increasingly unreliable as users connect and share across a growing number of mobile devices.


Integrations between identity management solutions and DMPs or automation tools make it possible to link existing, anonymous consumer data to known user records once a user registers on-site. When a user registers, your site can send the now authenticated user’s site ID to your DMP, and the known user is synced to the DMP against the anonymous ID and data on record for that user. Moving forward, the user’s identity data can be passed directly from the identity management platform to the DMP and attributed to the correct user based on the site ID match – even across devices and domains.

User anonymity is a major stumbling block for many businesses. To read even more tips about turning anonymous site visitors into known customers, download our Social Login 101 white paper.

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8 Terms Every Business Should Know When Developing a Customer Identity Management Strategy

Posted On: Filed Under: Customer Identity Management, Data Integration, Identity Data

Advances in marketing technology and databases have fundamentally changed how businesses learn about consumers and maintain relationships with their customers. The more brands are able to understand about their customers on a granular level, the more effective they are at marketing to said customers. This granular level of understanding is achieved by accessing and leveraging the valuable data housed within a user’s online identity.

Customer identity data is the foundation for modern marketing. When users register or log in on websites and applications, using either traditional registration or social authentication, they self-identify, giving businesses permission-based access to rich, first-party data. This data, in turn, provides IT and marketing professionals with the groundwork they need to learn about users across devices and touchpoints, produce more relevant marketing messaging, and attain better marketing results.

Having the ability to manage customer identities and build complete user profiles is crucial to data-driven marketing, and organizations must have an understanding of certain technical terms in order to develop a successful customer identity management strategy. Let’s dive into some of those terms.


Authentication is the process of ensuring and confirming an end user’s identity. Commonly enforced with a username and password, authentication answers the question, “Who are you?” Social Login, or the use of any third-party identity provider such as Facebook, Amazon, or PayPal, is an alternative and faster method of identity confirmation.


Dynamic Schema Database

A dynamic schema database not only allows data to be stored without the need for a predefined structure, but also enforces data storage rules when a schema has been defined. Dynamic schema databases can seamlessly process massive amounts of structured and unstructured user data in an optimized way. For example, in addition to housing relational data points with only one corresponding entry such as first name, zip code, and birth year, dynamic schema databases can also normalize and store unstructured social identity data such as likes, interests, and occupations.



Federation allows users to use an identity from one site to seamlessly access sites that belong to a partnering company or organization. Federation creates a smooth experience across web properties with disparate databases, reduces barrier to entry, and prevents the need for re-authentication. For instance, a user may need to order new checks from his or her bank. Federation allows the user to access the bank’s website, as well as the check-ordering system, without the need for separate login credentials. Federation also eases the adoption of SaaS services through SSO (Single Sign-On).


OAuth is the authorization protocol that allows a third-party website or application to access a user’s data without the user needing to share login credentials. OAuth is different from OpenID and SAML in being exclusively for authorization purposes and not for authentication purposes. An example of OAuth being applied would involve a website or mobile application accessing “likes” from Facebook (the user grants permission to allow this to happen). OAuth enables users to share their data stored on one site with another site under a secure authorization scheme.


OpenID is an authentication protocol that allows a user to log in once and access multiple, disparate websites. OpenID is sponsored by Facebook, Microsoft, Google, PayPal, Symantec, and Yahoo, and is often used in conjunction with OAuth.

SAML (Security Assertion Markup Language)

SAML is a security standard that verifies a user’s identity and determines authorization by connecting the end-user with identity providers and service providers. After authenticating with the identity provider, the user has access to multiple applications and/or sites due to a previously defined trust relationship. SAML requires the service provider and identity provider to be configured and introduced first.

Single Sign-On (SSO)

Single Sign-On is an authentication process that allows a user to access multiple sites/applications with one set of login credentials. SSO can take a few forms:

  • As a single identity that can be used as an individual login on different sites. For example, Facebook can be used as a login mechanism on different sites, but logging into one site does not mean it is recognized on any other site.
  • As a single identity that can be recognized across related sites. The identity can be used within the same session across different sites (i.e., different branded sites within one corporate group). For example, a user that logs in with Facebook on one site will automatically be recognized as he or she navigates to other sites within the site group.

Two-Factor Authentication

Two-Factor Authentication is a security mechanism that requires a user to authenticate with two types of credentials. It ensures the validity of a user’s identity and minimizes account phishing by adding an additional authentication step during the login process. For example, a user can be sent a verification code via SMS during the login process.


These are just a few of the terms brands should be aware of when evaluating customer identity management platforms and establishing an identity management strategy. To learn more about how customer identity management can benefit your business, request a demo here.

– Reeyaz Hamirani, Corporate Communications Manager

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3 Examples of the Evolution of Identity

Posted On: Filed Under: Customer Identity, Identity Data, UX

The concept of digital identity has evolved significantly over the last 15 years. Though traditional registration forms that require usernames, email addresses, and passwords are still mainstays across the Internet, we’ve also seen the proliferation of simpler, more modern methods of authentication.

Social login, for example, has been widely adopted by both businesses and consumers. Allowing users to verify their identities and log in to websites and mobile applications using existing profiles from networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn not only creates a more streamlined experience for consumers, it also enables marketers to capture and leverage rich, first-party social identity data.

Screen Shot 2015-03-06 at 8.15.00 AM

Users clearly enjoy the ease and speed of social login — Facebook Login was used more than 10 billion times in 2013 alone (Facebook Newsroom). Organizations also understand the value of the identity data housed within social profiles — hundreds of thousands of websites and apps across the Internet now employ some form of social login (Datanyze).

As the evolution of digital identity continues, we’re seeing even more unique and integrated means of online verification. Let’s take a look at three interesting methods of identity authentication in use today.

Apple Pay

When Apple introduced the iPhone 5S, the company introduced a new hardware feature called Touch ID. Touch ID allows users to unlock their smartphones, tablets, and certain operating system applications using just a fingerprint. A year later, when Apple unveiled the iPhone 6, we saw the introduction of Apple Pay, a mobile payment system.

The combination of Touch ID, Apple Pay, and Apple’s native Passbook app effectively digitizes a user’s entire wallet and identity as a consumer, using biometrics and NFC technology to authenticate shoppers at the point of sale. Goods can be purchased using only a smartphone, without the need to swipe a credit card.


Twitter Digits

In late 2014, social networking company Twitter introduced Digits, a tool that allows users to sign up for mobile apps and authenticate their identities without the need to create new login credentials. Rather than creating new usernames and passwords, consumers can log in using their cell phone numbers — an identification mechanism they already use every day.

With Digits, online accounts are tied only to mobile phone numbers, eliminating password fatigue for users, and reducing the amount of spam or inactive accounts businesses have to deal with. An individual signs up using his or her phone number, receives an SMS code, enters the code into the verification field, and the process is complete.


Log In with PayPal

As eCommerce and mobile commerce continue to grow (Internet Retailer), we’re seeing more and more consumers leverage authentication solutions from payment providers. PayPal, for instance, has its own third-party identification solution for websites and apps called Log In with PayPal.

Log In with PayPal allows consumers to log in to web properties using their existing PayPal credentials. This option streamlines checkout processes and provides enhanced merchant experiences as most shipping and payment details are stored within PayPal.


Consumer identity, as well as the means to verify consumer identity, are becoming increasingly important across the Internet, and businesses need to be adequately prepared.

In order to successfully embrace and prepare for the continued evolution of digital identity, brands need a customer identity management solution in place that is capable of normalizing both structured and unstructured consumer data, as well as maintaining compliance with the ever-changing APIs of third-party identity providers.

To learn more about how concept of identity will continue to diversify, download our free eBook, “The Evolution of Consumer Identity.”

– Reeyaz Hamirani, Corporate Communications Manager

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Be a PRO with Your Social Data

Posted On: Filed Under: Big Data, Social Marketing

We’ve already espoused the benefits of social data, but it’s just as important for the businesses handling this data to understand how to use it responsibly. In other words, social data is only as valuable as a business’s ability to properly leverage it, which means respecting users’ rights and delivering value to socially registered customers.

Because of the sensitive nature of social data, it’s crucial for businesses to practice discernment and integrity while handling users’ information. To boil it down, here are some tips businesses should follow to handle users’ data like a PRO:

Read more on “Be a PRO with Your Social Data” »

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Social Login: What CMOs Should Know – Infographic

Posted On: Filed Under: Infographics, Marketing Resources, Social Marketing

Social login makes registration and sign-in easy for users, but what are the impacts on businesses? For one, studies show that socially logged-in users spend more time engaging with the website and are more likely to purchase products. Social login also gives businesses access to an accurate database of their customers’ preferences, backgrounds, and contact information, which can be leveraged for targeted marketing campaigns.

Other benefits of social login include increased account registrations, increased return on advertising spend, and reduced support costs.

The impact of social login for businesses is invaluable. But we’ll let the numbers speak for themselves. See the following infographic for a closer look at how social login impacts any digital marketing strategy:

Read more on “Social Login: What CMOs Should Know – Infographic” »

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3 Things to Know about Social Data

Posted On: Filed Under: Big Data, Marketing Resources, Social Marketing No Comments on 3 Things to Know about Social Data

Social data has undoubtedly become one of the most important metrics in marketing today. However, a recent study by eMarketer indicates that a large gap exists between the relevancy of social data to marketing today and what marketers actually understand about social analytics. According to the report, 53 percent of marketers plan to make greater use of real-time data in 2013. Despite this, many marketing professional with years of experience in the industry are still in a bind over just how this wealth of information can and should be used to increase conversions and drive user engagement.

As social data continues to grow in volume and prominence, it’s increasingly important for marketers to effectively leverage it to improve best practices and foster customer relationships. Because ultimately, what’s the use in having lots of user data if you can’t use it to benefit your business?

To shed some light on this subject, we’ve boiled Social Data 101 down to three points to give readers a more holistic understanding of exactly what social data is and how it can be used:

Read more on “3 Things to Know about Social Data” »

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Data Privacy: Businesses That Got it Wrong in the Past and What We Can All Learn from Them

Posted On: Filed Under: Customer Experience, Marketing Resources, Social Marketing

Earlier this week, we wrote about the value of respecting user privacy laws and dispensed a few tips on how businesses can establish customer trust. Continuing the theme of data privacy, we’re looking at two companies that ran into privacy violations in the past to glean insights on how businesses can avoid similar mistakes and better communicate a commitment to transparency and integrity when handling users’ data.

Even in an age where users purposefully store and share personal photographs on Instagram, post life updates in real-time on Twitter, and announce wedding engagements over Facebook, data privacy is still a subject of much contention and controversy. When using social data to better understand their users, businesses walk a fine line between leveraging this data to create personalized online experiences and respecting their users’ privacy. By investigating companies that have failed to protect and use social data with discernment in the past, businesses can learn to become more responsible with the information entrusted to them.

Read more on “Data Privacy: Businesses That Got it Wrong in the Past and What We Can All Learn from Them” »

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With Big Data Comes Big Responsibility

Posted On: Filed Under: Big Data, Social Marketing

In commemoration of Data Privacy Day, we’re exploring the implications of social data as both an instrumental marketing tool and a privacy concern for businesses.

As more and more users sign in and input personal data into social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Google, these sites accumulate mountains of actionable insight into their users’ backgrounds, interests, and purchasing habits. Businesses that tap into this user data can better understand their customers and gain a huge leg up over their competitors.

Sounds like a marketer’s dream, right? There’s a catch: Social data comes hand-in-hand with big responsibility. More specifically, businesses with access to social data must exercise transparency over data usage and make it a priority to uphold users’ privacy rights.

Users are both concerned about their privacy and generally uncomfortable with the idea of handing over personal data to corporations. In the wake of these concerns, it’s increasingly important for businesses to communicate clearly with their online audiences about how their personal information is being stored and leveraged.

Read more on “With Big Data Comes Big Responsibility” »

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How Businesses Can Build Trust

Posted On: Filed Under: Marketing Resources

In commemoration of Data Privacy Day, we’re exploring the implications of social data as both an instrumental marketing tool and a privacy concern for businesses.

Trust is paramount for any business looking to establish a loyal customer base. A study from the SDA Bocconi revealed a direct correlation between customer trust, advocacy, and spend.


Below are three simple principles that businesses can live by to establish trust and credibility.

Read more on “How Businesses Can Build Trust” »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , Summit + Rise of Social Commerce (#rsc10) = The Future of Social Shopping

Posted On: Filed Under: Gigya Updates

Two major events over the past few weeks focused their agendas on the future of retail:’s Annual Summit and the Altimeter Group’s Rise of Social Commerce.  Here are some of the key trends that emerged and our takeaways:

Trend #1: Seamless experiences across platforms
Technologies are beginning to break down the walls between online stores and their bricks and mortar counterparts.  Retailers are eager for greater integration between platforms.  The Altimeter Group calls this “Frictionless commerce.”  Technologies and user experiences that were highlighted include:

  • Geo location (passive and active) so that retailers and recognize you in-store before you reach the register.
  • Mobile experiences that are relevant wherever you want to shop, e.g. providing m-commerce outside of the store and price comparison tools and coupon options within the store.
  • Shopping with friends online in a way that is as satisfying and effective as the group shopping experience in-store. Wet Seal and Levi’s are retailers who has been testing heavily.
  • Facebook becoming a commerce platform – potentially competing in the future with ecommerce platforms like IBM WebSphere.

Key Takeaway: While some of these technologies are early stage, enabling people to use an existing social identity on any device will be a key element of unifying the retail experience across platforms, giving retailers a powerful way to link data and systems.

Read more on “ Summit + Rise of Social Commerce (#rsc10) = The Future of Social Shopping” »

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“It depends” – Why context is important when analyzing the mix of user connections by social network platform for any site

Posted On: Filed Under: Gigya Updates No Comments on “It depends” – Why context is important when analyzing the mix of user connections by social network platform for any site

We’ve seen a lot of data published lately – and quite a bit of associated confusion – from a host of technology vendors showing drastically different “typical” mix of user connections by social network among those who use a social network identity to register, share, comment or accomplish some other site goal.  It’s terrific that there is so much momentum and data to analyze, but it’s critically important that anyone looking for the “so what’s” keeps context in mind, asking the tough questions, and that those providing the data strive to share as granular a view as possible.

TechCrunch recently published connection mix data from Gigya, and we made a point to break it down by news vs. entertainment sites, and then again for registration versus sharing:

For example, Google, AOL, OpenID and other identity or bookmarking providers don’t (yet) provide Social Login -like sharing capabilities for 3rd party websites (though in a previous post about Google Buzz we talk about how that’s certain to come soon), so we’re careful to note that this mix is limited to those platforms that provide these “next-generation” sharing APIs, and how that explains the limited list of platforms.

Distribution of shared items
Facebook: 44%
Twitter: 29%

There are far more companies providing identities with which users can login to 3rd party websites, so that data looks different from sharing data, and also looks different by site type:

Read more on ““It depends” – Why context is important when analyzing the mix of user connections by social network platform for any site” »

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