Taking an identity-centred approach to security has never been more important, attendees heard at Identity Week 2021.

Nick Godfrey, Head of CISO Office, Google Cloud explained how after a hack attack on the search engine giant called Operation Aurora, it had implemented a “zero trust” initative that involved a complex interlinking network of identity authentication steps.

Godfrey explain that concepts of zero trust – which are founded in the user’s identity – will be critical as the world emerges from the pandemic, while noting that there had been a 400% rise in cyberattacks since April 2020.

He explained how a nuanced, user-based approach sees non-intrusive methods authenticate across the tech firm’s various domains, and that this establishes a potential model for identity-centred user security.

Rigorous travel requirements demanded by COVID-19 controls, contrasted with the need to get the global economy back moving present a challenge to the border control sector that it must meet, attendees also heard at the event.

“We need a swift, safe and secure return to international travel,” Cyril Gout, Director Operational Support and Analysis Directorate, Interpol, told the audience.

In the session, Identity: building one safe and easy way for the public to access all government services, Natalie Jones, Director, Digital Identity, Government Digital Service, then gave insights into how digital services were set to revolutionise UK citizens’ interactions with government.

In a fascinating session on inclusion in the identity industry, Elinor Hull, WiD Member, Post Office
and Louise Maynard-Atem, WiD research lead, Women in Identity, discussed how inclusion is vital in product design.

The hugely successful in-person event was welcomed by the hundreds of attendees there as a very welcome return to reality after the months of the pandemic.