Okta To Incorporate AI Across Its Identity Platform


Okta, the identity company, has announced its plans to infuse artificial intelligence (AI) into its entire identity platform. At the Oktane customer conference in San Francisco, Okta CEO Todd McKinnon emphasized the significance and impact of AI, comparing it to past technological advancements such as the internet, cloud, and mobile.

Key Takeaway

Okta is planning to integrate AI across its identity platform by leveraging valuable data and advanced AI technology. The AI capabilities, including Identity Threat Protection, Policy Recommender, and Log Analyzer, aim to enhance security and improve user experience. Okta is using a combination of AI models from different providers and acknowledges the necessity of AI in preparing for the future security landscape.

Okta AI: Enhancing Security and User Experience

Okta AI is not a standalone product, but rather a set of capabilities that will be integrated into the platform over time. These capabilities will leverage the vast amount of data collected by Okta regarding identity, risk signals, usage patterns, and customer policies. By combining this valuable data with AI technology, Okta aims to enhance security and improve user experience across its platform.

The incorporation of AI will involve several components, with three key aspects highlighted by McKinnon:

  1. Identity Threat Protection: This feature focuses on traditional identity protection and goes beyond verifying the user’s identity through computer, network, and location checks. It continuously monitors signals from various sources, including external partner systems, in order to detect any potential risks. If a threat surpasses a specific threshold, Okta will initiate a ‘universal logout,’ logging the user out from all systems until the security issue is addressed.
  2. Policy Recommender: Using data from Okta’s extensive customer base, Policy Recommender suggests application security configurations based on similar use cases. It considers the balance between ease of use and security, recommending customized policies that meet each customer’s requirements and security posture.
  3. Log Analyzer: This feature leverages generative AI to enable users to query Okta logs using natural language. By training the model on the queries made by users, Okta’s system can provide relevant answers based on the log information. This natural language interface enhances the user’s ability to extract insights from the logs.

McKinnon mentioned that Okta is using a combination of AI models from various providers, including Google, OpenAI, and Amazon. In the future, Okta may also develop its own model based on open source offerings.

Embracing AI in the Security Battle

According to Ray Wang, founder and principal analyst at Constellation Research, it is expected that AI will play a critical role in the ongoing security battle, with both attackers and defenders utilizing AI to gain an advantage. As a result, identity providers like Okta have no choice but to incorporate AI capabilities to address evolving threats and proactively protect their customers.

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