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New customer authentication service launched by BT to provide extra layer of security

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Aiming to help UK etailers protect user identities and combat fraud, BT has announced the launch of a new authentication service.

Called BT Managed Authentication, the service has been developed for etailers selling high value goods, and online providers which tend to attract large numbers of regular customers, accessing specific applications.

The customer’s traditional username and password is supplemented with a ‘multi-factor authentication’ – an extra one-time-password. This can only be generated by a unique algorithm running on a device or piece of software issued to each individual customer.

BT says the one-time-passwords will expire after a single use and change every few minutes, in order to prevent phishing attacks and to protect identities.

Online fraud is still a major concern for British consumers and technology companies are looking for new systems to make transactions more secure. Jeffrey Schmidt, executive global head of business continuity, security and governance at BT Global Services, said: “Businesses and end-users are facing increasing attacks against online services, and the need for better security is vital. Whether it is protection from fraudsters or simply wanting to reassure consumers that their money or data is secure, many organisations are moving away from username and password, towards stronger methods of authentication.”

He says the Managed Authentication service offers a higher level of protection and can be quickly and easily rolled out.

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