The emergence of technology has brought about a rapid transformation in our society, impacting our ways of communication and changing the traditional ways businesses are conducted. With the swift integration of digitisation and a higher level of interconnectivity, it is pertinent that businesses now reconsider how the convenience and accessibility of the online universe can pose as a potential risk to their operations. As such, one way for businesses and organisations to overcome this prominent issue of cybersecurity is to adopt digital security measures to build trust and identity assurance through digital identity and identity of things.
Established in 2000, i-Sprint Innovations (i-Sprint) is a trusted solution provider in identity, credential and access management solution, which incorporates the latest authentication technologies including mobile devices, biometrics, GPS location, etc. to secure access and protection of sensitive data, critical business transactions and valuable assets. Identity assurance is the first line of defense for controlling access to the cyber world. Using the digital identity, i-Sprint empowers enterprises to verify users’ identity and enable authorised users to access relevant business transactions and sensitive information at the right place at the right time.
Using the “Force of Identity+”, i-Sprint has extended digital identity to cover Identity of Things (IDoT), which creates an unique approach to provide identity assurance and to create the assocation between users and physical objects. This relationship helps accelerate and extend the circle of trust to power huge productivity gain. With more than 100 million enterprise users, i-Sprint prides itself on the ability to deliver their award-winning cyber security solutions across various industries and sectors such as financial services, government, telecommunication, public utilities, manufacturing, healthcare and education, etc.
“The four Major IT Forces (cloud, social, mobile and information) have created many interactions among people and Things (both smart devices and dumb devices) around us. These new way of interactions have brought about many new security challenges for organisations and users i.e. Who own that Thing? How can we ensure that Thing is genuine? Leveraging our strong presence in the IAM market with over 200 global customers, we have expanded our core technology to address the challenges of Identity of Things to provide a new generation of brand protection solution, which has seen a huge demand by manufacturers in recent years,” said Mr Dutch Ng, CEO of i-Sprint.
INNOVATION AS A CORE VALUE
“Innovation” is one of the core values at i-Sprint. Over the years, the company has successfully developed many new security solutions and product features through its own innovation program. Being a forefront information security product company, i-Sprint has been continually investing its R&D efforts in enhancing their existing products to cater for current market needs and create competitive advantages, while also spearheading into future demands.
i-Sprint has built two major R&D centres, staffed with more 120 engineers to focus on R&D activities and to bring innovations to their products. These innovations are important for i-Sprint to address the requirements and expectations from partners and customers. Currently, i-Sprint focuses on the following key technology areas:
A – Authentication
B – Biometrics/ Blockchain
C – Cloud
D – Device for Mobility
E – End to End Encryption
F – Fintech Solution Technology Enabler
“Our knowledge and know-how in digital identity have enabled us to excel in Identity of Things (IDoT) management solution and developed a new generation of Brand Protection solution, AccessReal. This proven solution is designed for anti-counterfeiting, track and trace and consumer marketing with a strong focus on security features. Since the launch of the product two years ago, our AccessReal solution has helped our clients address their product authentication in various sectors such as publication, F&B, health products, automatics, pharmaceutical and more.”
“Besides our own development and innovation, we have been partnering with research institutions in advance technology to complement our research activities. For example, we have a collaboration with the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) under the R&D Program Grant from the National Research Foundation (NRF) for a project based on Blockchain technology,” said Dutch.
INCORPORATING CYBERSECURITY AS A BUSINESS RISK
In recent years, technology has propelled businesses with a wider outreach via the World Wide Web (WWW). The cloud-based solutions provide companies with an option to adopt technology without a need for on-premise infrastructure and also, speed up the time to market for new systems. However, businesses need to be aware of the strengths and weaknesses of Cloud deployment so that they can take necessary precautionary measures to prevent the risk of data leakage and cybersecurity attacks.
Nowadays, all businesses faces cybersecurity threats regardless whether they are big corporations or small businesses. In the case of MNCs, their awareness of cyber attacks, security risks and data breaches are usually higher than SMEs due to the larger impact of such incidences and their available resources. Since the introduction of the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) in Singapore and other similar privacy regulations abroad, corporations have taken extra measures to protect their customers’ data. Similarly, it is also critical for SMEs to increase their knowledge on cybersecurity and take preventive measures such that they do not succumb to cyber attacks. Hence it is important for SMEs to know that their limitations on technical expertise and as well as their available resources.
“The weakness link on security is always individuals who use the same set of password for every online platform. This increases the chance of a system hack and comprises the integrity of any security systems. Therefore, companies must educate their employees to set more stringent password combinations that are hard to guess. Business leaders can also consider using IAM solution such as the two-factor authentication to add a second layer of authentication requirement before gaining access to the system. To further improve the user experience and security, we have launched an innovative solution to achieve password-less logins. Users can install our security software to turn their mobile phones into security remote control devices such that they can authorise access to different types of application, confirm transactions over the phone or even over the counter securely,” explained Dutch.
INTERNATIONALISATION OF SMES
i-Sprint started its overseas venture 15 years ago, experiencing ups and downs during the initial stages when it was attempting to establish its foothold across the region. In a bid to speed up its overseas expansion, the company focused on collaborating with business partners who possessed good knowledge of their markets to reach out to potential customers. Furthermore, i-Sprint also spent time developing key strategic customer accounts in each of its target country. Those key accounts not only provided substantial recurring revenue, they also provided good reference cases for other opportunities. Based on its past experiences, i-Sprint concluded the following advice for other SMEs looking to internationalise their businesses: relationship, referral, understanding of the local market and product localisation.
“In recent years, we got to learn more about the various government grants, schemes and assistance rendered to SMEs to internationalise their businesses. We believe that statutory boards such as Enterprise Singapore and Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) provide beneficial resources, which local companies can utilise for their business ventures beyond the shores of Singapore. This can effectively reduce trial and error time and reach out to the right target audience quickly.”
“i-Sprint will keep innovating our product offerings for the needs of our customers. We hope to truly embody the value of innovation, which is the cornerstone of i-Sprint’s establishment. Currently, we have plans to expand to more markets in Asia, and we are also looking towards the United States and Europe,” said Dutch.
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