For this ‘Company in the Spotlight’ Wessel Ploegmakers, co-head of the Nordics office, talks to Niklas Brask. Niklas is the CEO of Pointsharp, a leading solutions provider in the Identity and Access Management (IAM) market.
Can you introduce the offering of Pointsharp and how that relates to digital security?
We started Pointsharp already 15 years ago, because we noticed the trend of mobility and the increased need for secure login. In that time it was common to login with username and password, but certainly in highly regulated industries and for business critical applications that wasn’t sufficient enough. Think of customers in banking & finance, manufacturing industries and government. Or pilots and flight attendants in the aviation industry. We created infrastructural solutions for multifactor authentication: technology that can be used for authentication and personal identification. The factors can relate to something that you know (password or pin code), possess (smartphone or token), are (fingerprint, face recognition) or where you are (time & location).
Improved and more sophisticated methods for secure login is one of the technological instruments that help you protect against digital threats. See the article with Talitha Papelard from Northwave.
The solutions of Pointsharp differ from the competition and more generic solutions (like the secure login of Micosoft) on two major aspects:
- One platform: in complex organizations with a complex application and system landscape, employees don’t want to use a variety of logins for different systems. With Pointsharp and its authentication gateway, there is one way of getting access to all applications. This makes life easier for employees, but helps organizations in getting insights into who uses which application and when.
- Configured in your own infrastructure: smaller companies often use an “IAM out of the box”-solution, but the >200 corporate and public sector customers we are working for prefer an IAM solution that is configured locally or deployed within their private cloud. Since their data, applications and work processes are so sensitive and critical to them, they don’t want to put their fate in the hands of Big Tech companies with data centers in the US.
What trends do you see in the digital security market and the IAM space in particular?
In general, we see that more and more organizations are aware of the importance of digital security and resilience. A business can be significantly disrupted by ransomware, for example. More specific in the field of IAM we identify the following trends:
- New regulations, for example GDPR, putting extra emphasis on privacy and security.
- Rise and adoption of new technologies, like face recognition and other biometrics.
- Passwordless login.
- Larger corporates and governments in e.g. Europe are becoming more critical about how their solutions are hosted and the legal aspects of who controls the data.
Finally: how does Pointsharp react on those trends? What’s on your roadmap?
One of our focus areas of product development & management is usability. After all, our tagline is “secure login made easy”. We strive for a super robust and technologically advanced way of authentication, but from an end-user perspective it needs to be as simple and seamless as possible. Especially a larger organization can offer a better end-user experience by customizing their own service, rather than adopting a less flexible public cloud service.
Commercially we have two main items on our roadmap: first of all, helping our customers with new use cases. The more integrations we have with applications in daily work processes, the better we can help our customers and their employees. Secondly, expanding our network of strategic partners and value-added resellers. As already mentioned, Pointsharp delivers value by dedicated implementation of our solutions in the infrastructure of customers. Especially on local markets, customers expect local service providers to do that. Therefore we team up with new partners in, for example, the DACH region. If you’re interested in working together with us, feel free to contact us.