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Okta expands multi-factor authentication as it diversifies beyond single sign-on

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Okta customers who use the identity provider for single sign-on capabilities will get basic multi-factor authentication added to their service for free, as part of a suite of updates the company announced today.

Starting now, all Okta Identity Cloud customers will be able to set up user accounts to require a one-time code for access, in addition to a user’s password. The feature is much like the two-factor authentication offerings that have rolled out to social networks like Facebook and to other services, like Gmail. For more robust protections, companies can pay for Okta’s multi-factor authentication product.

The news is part of the company’s Oktane conference, which takes place in Las Vegas this week. While Okta is best known for providing a single sign-on capability through its Identity Cloud service, this year’s announcements are focused on expanding the company’s business into new products, like multi-factor authentication.

It’s important for Okta to build out its product portfolio in order to grow, but it’s doubly necessary now that the company is publicly traded and is beholden to Wall Street investors. Okta filed for an IPO earlier this year, and its stock price has held steady, even as other big-name tech companies new to the public market have fallen.

Okta’s paid Adaptive Multi-Factor Authentication service now works with a whole host of new applications, including those compatible with RDP, LDAP, other SSO products, ADFS, custom web apps, and RADIUS. That should make AMFA more appealing to a wider range of customers, not just those who use Okta as their identity provider.

When it comes to improvements to the company’s core product, Okta has now enabled the use of LDAP-enabled applications with its Identity Cloud, something customers have been missing up to this point. In addition, the company is expanding its network of third-party integrations to include on-premises networking companies like Splunk, Palo Alto Networks, F5, and IBM QRadar.

Those integrations help expand Okta’s reach beyond cloud apps and into customer data centers, something it needs in order to compete with other offerings on the market.

Companies are also able to set up a self-service sign-on page so that contractors can go in and ask to be provisioned an Okta login without an administrator needing to go through and create an account for them.

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