CIAM: What You Need to Know to Build a Secure and Seamless Customer Experience

Your customers want one thing from your business regardless of the device or channel they use: a secure and seamless experience.

Your customers want one thing from your business regardless of the device or channel they use: a secure and seamless experience.  

But with all the high-profile security and data breaches the world has seen in recent years, customers are demanding better security and privacy when it comes to their personal information and digital experiences. Organisations that fail to provide next-level security and privacy for their customers will lose them. 

So now, more than ever, organisations are called to prioritise customer identity security.  

Traditional approaches to identity and access management — which were originally built solely for on-premises workspaces — are falling short.   

This prompted the rise of Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM).  

It’s a specialised branch of identity and access management (IAM) that focuses on managing identities, access privileges, and personal data across various digital channels. CIAM solutions are designed to provide secure and seamless customer experiences while protecting customer data and privacy.  

By providing secure and personalised experiences, your organisation can deliver convenient services while maintaining customer privacy and data security. 

In this article, we will explore the key aspects of modern CIAM, its benefits, and how ThunderLabs can be your trusted partner in building a secure and seamless customer experience. 

When it comes to putting identity front and centre, a modern CIAM solution needs to deliver the following capability. 



1. Frictionless user experiences 

A modern CIAM solution should prioritise frictionless user experiences to enhance customer satisfaction and engagement. By implementing intuitive and user-friendly interfaces, organisations can streamline the registration, login, and account management processes.  

This includes offering social log-in options, progressive profiling (collecting information gradually), and personalised recommendations based on user preferences.  

By reducing friction and simplifying interactions, organisations can enhance customer onboarding, retention, and overall satisfaction. 



2. Speed-to-market

In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, speed-to-market is crucial for gaining a competitive edge. A CIAM solution should provide rapid deployment and configuration capabilities, allowing organisations to quickly adapt to changing business requirements.  

Leveraging cloud-based CIAM platforms, organisations can achieve accelerated implementation, scalability, and flexibility. This enables businesses to launch new products and services rapidly, seize market opportunities, and stay ahead of the competition. 




This is a key capability of a modern CIAM solution. It enables organisations to manage and control user access across multiple applications, platforms, and channels from a single unified interface.  

This approach simplifies administration, improves security, and reduces operational complexity. By leveraging this, organisations can enforce consistent security policies, monitor user activities, and mitigate the risk of unauthorized access or data breaches. 




Security threats have become more sophisticated and widespread. A modern CIAM solution must provide internet-scale security to safeguard customer identities and sensitive data.  

This involves implementing robust security measures such as encryption, secure authentication protocols (such as OAuth, OpenID Connect, and SAML), and proactive threat detection mechanisms.  

Additionally, leveraging AI-powered anomaly detection and behaviour analytics can help identify and mitigate emerging security threats in real-time. 

Here are the key differences between a bad and good customer identity experience: 

Bad Customer Identity Experience 

  • Forced account creation and password setup just to browse a website. 
  • Multiple accounts and passwords required for different apps, websites, and portals within the same company. 
  • Inconsistent login experiences and functionalities across devices. 
  • Lengthy registration process demanding excessive personal information. 
  • Needing to contact customer service for password resets or corrections. 
  • Mandatory SMS passcode entry with each login, regardless of location or device consistency. 

Good Customer Identity Experience 

  • Simple and streamlined registration process, collecting only essential information. 
  • Convenient face recognition or biometric authentication on smart devices. 
  • Secure verification through text message or email for sensitive financial transactions. 
  • Unified access to all services within a business through a single account. 

Customer Identity Experience in Financial Institution

Bad Customer Identity Experience 

  • Complex and time-consuming account opening process, involving excessive paperwork and manual verification. 
  • Multiple accounts and credentials required for various financial services within the same institution, leading to user confusion and inconvenience. 
  • Cumbersome authentication methods, such as frequent password changes or reliance on outdated security measures. 
  • Limited digital access and self-service capabilities, forcing customers to rely heavily on in-person branch visits or phone support for basic transactions. 
  • Lack of transparent and user-friendly interfaces for financial management, making it challenging for customers to navigate and understand their financial data. 
  • Inadequate protection against fraud and data breaches, leaving customers vulnerable to identity theft and unauthorised access to their financial accounts. 


Good Customer Identity Experience  

  • Simplified and digitised account opening process, minimising paperwork and allowing for online verification. 
  • Unified customer identity across various financial services within the institution, enabling seamless access and transaction management. 
  • Convenient and secure authentication methods, such as biometric recognition or multi-factor authentication, enhancing user experience and security. 
  • Comprehensive digital access and self-service capabilities, empowering customers to perform transactions, view statements, and manage their finances online. 
  • Intuitive user interfaces and personalised financial dashboards, providing clear insights into account balances, transaction history, and financial planning tools. 
  • Robust security measures, including encryption, fraud detection systems, and proactive monitoring, ensuring customer data protection and minimising risks.

ThunderLabs: Your Trusted Partner for CIAM Solutions 

At ThunderLabs, we’re more than just experts in modern CIAM solutions — we’re also a proud partner for Okta’s Customer Identity Cloud, powered by Auth0.  

Our partnership with Okta brings together the best of both worlds. With our spartan approach to service transformation and Okta’s state-of-the-art platform, we can now deliver unparalleled capabilities to our clients, prioritising business outcomes like never before. 

Our expert team ensures seamless integration and optimal security, enabling you to prioritise customer-centric security without compromising user experience.  

Curious to learn more about how we’re assisting Australia’s complex organizations with their customer identity challenges? 

Visit this page to discover how ThunderLabs is paving the way for seamless, secure, and personalised experiences, all while harnessing the power of Okta’s Customer Identity Cloud.  

Join our tech community

We build digital solutions & recruit specialists. Learn about our projects and discover career & hiring opportunities at ThunderLabs.