Oktane20 Live – Bringing the conference to you

Blog | Posted: 03-04-2020
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For those of you that don’t know what Oktane is, it’s a headline event brought to you by Identity Access Management leader Okta.

They bring together thousands of IT professionals, product leaders, developers, technology partners and customers alike to discuss the importance of identity in our ever increasingly tech dependant world.

While I had been looking forward to venturing out to California to attend the event in person, the COVID-19 crisis had caused the in-person conference to be cancelled, but, that didn’t stop the Okta team from using the power of technology to run the event entirely virtually, allowing me (and my cats) to attend from the comfort of my home (and also avoid the jet lag!)

We still got to enjoy the keynote theatres and breakout/plenary session areas where attendees were presented to from Okta senior management, subject matter experts and customers alike.

Okta CEO and co-founder, Todd McKinnon
Okta CEO and co-founder, Todd McKinnon


There was Partner Pavilions where attendees could interact with Okta’s technology partners and sponsors of the event and also the Okta hub where attendees could get more information on how Okta could assist with things like Education, Customer/Workforce Identity solutions, topics like Zero Trust, Hybrid IT or get more information on the new releases that were announced during the conference.

Speaking of which, here’s a summary of the key announcements made over the two days:

Okta Identity Engine

The Okta Identity Engine is a set of customizable building blocks that has been developed to power any access experience for a company’s users and its customers. These building blocks are dynamic & customisable, and the use cases are endless, it could be for things as simple as recovering accounts because of forgotten passwords or to apply app level policies that respond differently depending on the context of the user.

Okta have been able to achieve this because the Identity engine runs a sequence of 4 steps and applies context to these steps about the user, their device, the app, network and intent and adapts the access experience accordingly.

Okta Workflows

Okta Workflows are used to automate business processes simply and effectively without the need for custom code, all created through a simple and easy to use graphical user interface.

Using workflows means that customers can do more and be more granular with on boarding and off boarding processes as an example. All workflows are triggered by an event, run some logic, like an If/this then that function then take an action or a chain of actions to complete the process.

Using Okta’s Workflows for lifecycle management as an example will provide its customers faster time to value during these processes.

Okta Devices

Okta Devices is a platform service that aims to embed Okta on every device.

The reason?

To collect and evaluate device identity and endpoint security data to enable better more secure device-based access experiences.

Lots of organisations have a multitude of endpoint management and endpoint security solutions to help enforce security however these tools don’t directly communicate with the identity platforms, meaning there are a multitude of security polices for both users and devices that need to be maintained.

Okta devices has been developed to bridge this gap and to allow businesses to integrate the power of Okta’s Identity Platform with Endpoint management, detection and response solutions meaning if User A’s laptop gets infected with malware, User A can be revoked access to their apps until the device can be confirmed as remediated and secured.

Okta FastPass

Okta FastPass has been developed to enable truly passwordless authentication from any device or location to any Okta-managed app, with no dependency on Active Directory joins or mobility management tools, so long as the device is registered with Okta.

Because authentication processes differ from app to app, device to device and OS to OS and with most organisations having heterogeneous device and application architectures, delivering a truly passwordless experience is often difficult to achieve, if at all.

By utilising both Okta Devices and Okta FastPass companies and their users can really start to embrace truly passwordless authentication while still being able to enforce policy checks.

To summarise…

I had been looking forward to this conference for a long time coming as this was my first Oktane experience, but with the unplanned changes I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect with it being a virtual event.

However, even with the event being delivered virtually through my web browser, it didn’t stop you from enjoying the Oktane experience, it was just a different one.

One of the biggest takeaways from the conference was that Okta are working tirelessly to create and enhance their set of products that are powered by their platform services, made available through the Identity Cloud.

It’s these developments of the platform that is going to empower customers current and new to be able to solve both their workforce and their customer identity challenges now and in the future.

I hope from my summary of the event and new releases, you’ll see that Okta are really following through on their mission to enable any organisation to use any technology.

2020 is going to be a big year for this vendor and we look forward to seeing further enhancements of the Okta Identity Cloud to really be the single platform that is able to solve any access management use case.

Until next time!

Chris Collier
Technical Manager, Distology

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