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Christian currently serves as Manager of Product & Demand Management at Bechtel Corporation, working in a niche position between the business and technology delivery teams to help identify opportunities to drive worldwide innovation in the mobile and cloud computing areas. Prior to this, Christian was Principal Technology Architect at Manager of Global Systems Engineering at Bechtel. Having gained hands-on experience in 15 different countries designing and managing complex IT environments in support of worldwide project execution, Christian brings a wealth of enterprise experience and led a team that architected and deployed one of the world's first true private cloud infrastructures. Christian is one half of The Loose Couple Blog team and his disclaimer can be found here.

One response to “The Identity Crisis”

  1. Chris Swan

    It’s interesting that you talk about a single sign on experience, and have an illustration that could be used to describe multiple personas. Dealing with a multiplicity of personas has certainly caused a crisis amongst Google Apps users recently (as their new identity platform prevents multiple domains being used side by side as before).

    A concept that I’ve been trying to use here is that of an anchor identity – the sign in that you use to unlock other accounts (and this implies the strongest proofing and credential factoring).

    It’s relatively simple to do stuff from the enterprise out, using AD as the anchor identity, and then federating into various cloud services (at least where they support SAML, or where a gateway can be used). Things get much more interesting when the users are living outside the traditional enterprise boundary, and the old answer of ‘you must VPN in first’ is becoming more unacceptable.

    People will continue to use and want multiple personas – whether it’s a simple divide like ‘home’ versus ‘work’, or complex and multifacited; yet at the same time each person is an indivudal entity and resents being asked too frequently be their machines to prove who they are. Identity federation technology is already pretty mature, but often not as widely deployed as its creators hoped/expected; that said, I feel like we’re on the road to having much more widespread federations, which may sometimes take place within a given service provider – let’s call those micro federations.