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Readers' Choice 2009 Best Authentication Products

Readers vote on the best digital identity verification products, services, and management systems, including PKI, hardware and software tokens, smart cards.

VeriSign Identity Protection Authentication Service

VeriSign takes top honors for its standards-based, partially hosted multifactor authentication product. Respondents lauded its secure credentials and scalability. Recently VeriSign has made strides on mobile authentication, supporting 200-plus devices, and added self-service features, such as password retrieval. "Customers value the idea of self-service capabilities and heterogeneous mobile device support," said Burton Group Senior Analyst Mark Diodati.

RSA, The Security Division of EMC

The venerable SecurID line scored highly across the board, with the exception of vendor service and support. Today the product family includes software- and hardware-based authenticators (tokens), request-management agents and various servers. RSA claims it's the only vendor that automatically changes user passwords every 60 seconds, and publicizes its use of AES encryption.

Entrust IdentityGuard

When engaging competitors, Entrust touts IdentityGuard's affordability, but respondents' ranked it highest for integration and compatibility; it lagged in vendor service and support. The enterprise product line features a range of strong authentication options (physical, non-physical and mobile) authenticators (e-grids, digital certificates and tokens), native 802.1X wireless support and compatibility with BlackBerrys and iPhones.

Even in 2009, it's rare for any multifactor authentication product to meets all of an organization's needs. Diodati says three vexing issues--varied user constituencies; emerging Web applications; and mobile platform support--are forcing companies to mix and match technologies. Success demands clearly defined business problems. "If an organization doesn't have the intestinal fortitude to do that, it'll have to wait." -- Mark Diodati, senior analyst, Burton Group


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This was last published in September 2009

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