Worried that someone could steal your online identity, financial assets or data when you sign into accounts on the iPhone? Then Verisign’s free VIP Access app may be just what you’re looking for.
VIP Access, now available in the Apple App Store, adds an extra layer of security on top of online accounts. To do this, it produces a temporary security code that remains valid for only 30 seconds — during which time you must sign into the online account in question. Actually, it’s a three step process:
1. After you register for the app, Verisign sends you a login called a “Credential ID.”
2. You then open the app on your phone and enter this Credential ID into the box provided.
3. Based on this information, the app creates a unique security code that can then be used to login to any one of Verisign’s member sites.
A potential intruder would need to see this security code and sign-in within the 30-second span. The company has put up a video of the process.
The downside of this additional security is that the process requires more work on the user’s part than usual. Also, the app only works for the 40 sites in the Verisign VIP Network, including PayPal and eBay. So far, this list isn’t very impressive, but it’s early yet. Also requiring some effort, users are required to register for VIP Access at each of their sites individually.
I’m not sure how ready consumers will be to adopt the service. Vendors like Verisign cite surveys indicating users have a strong need for online security solutions, but actual demand is pretty hard to estimate. Still, in the e-commerce businesses I’ve been involved in, I’m continually surprised to see how drastically CVR increased when services like this are implemented.
Beyond that, there’s a definite need for more secure environments when purchasing goods. I wouldn’t be surprised if this concept was adapted for the iPhone. In recent months, non-digital mobile advertising (financial services, retail) has gotten some traction on the iPhone after advertisers started to see an improvement in results. That suggests these types of transactions are on the rise.
With the iPhone app, Verisign is making an additional push towards the off-deck mobile web. Traditionally,0 it has been known as a transaction enabler for carriers and content providers. It delivers millions of daily messages and eases digital transactions through mobile platforms, including secure mobile banking.
Competitors include Amdocs and Convergsys. Amdocs and Verisign have been responsible for some of the exit success stories in mobile. In recent months, there has been additional activity in this space as various companies jump at the chance to help carriers build their own app stores.