Okta reaches out to developers with new Customer Identity Cloud

Customer Identity Cloud is both a rebranding and enhancement of the Auth0 cloud that Okta acquired last year, and Okta has complemented that cloud’s existing focus on developers with three new strategic partnerships  with developer-focused platforms.

Cassio Sampaio, SVP of Product at Okta.

Today, at Oktane22 in San Francisco, Okta is making a pair of intertwined announcements designed to appeal to app builders and get more of them working with Okta. First, they unveiled the Okta Customer Identity Cloud, which is based on the Auth0 technology that Okta acquired in May 2021, and which provides an easy-to-implement and customizable customer identity solution. They also announced strategic alliances with DigitalOcean, Netlify, and Vercel. All three have large number of developers working on their platforms, and Okta’s objective here is to get more of them using Okta in their apps.

“The Customer Identity Cloud that we are now unveiling comes from the Auth0 acquisition,” said Cassio Sampaio, SVP of Product at Okta. “Auth0 was always – focused on application builders, and that is the key to their technology.”

Auth0 sold to a very different market than Okta before the acquisition, which sets up a complementary sales motion going forward.

“Think of it as top down vs bottom up,” Sampaio said. “Okta was good with the CISOs, and sold through them to companies of all sizes. Selling into the developer market, on the other hand, often involved the budget of the Chief Product officer or marketing teams. What Auth0 brings is that bottom up motion, which will bring similar goals with two companies coming together. A lot of transformation products are executed by development teams, some of which are very large scale production applications. They now have the ability to use Customer Identity Cloud.”

Sampaio said that Okta sees the Customer Identity Cloud as appealing to two specific use cases.

“One is consumer apps, which are often very large,” he indicated. “This opens up a new business opportunity for partners, in that they can now go after large consumer-like apps which are moving to the cloud. A lot of opportunity remains here because this cloud transition has been slower around identity compared to other areas. That’s also why our competition for this will be less about external companies but more about in-house efforts, because identity is a few years behind the market there.”

The second use case is SaaS applications.

“Making customers enterprise ready around SaaS is crucial for them to succeed,” Sampaio said. “This helps them to onboard new users, and manage authentication across business customers, in order to provide them with the right level of security and compliance.”

Cassio said that new capabilities are also being added to Consumer Apps by the end of Q2.

“One is support of Passkeys,” he stated. Passkeys are a replacement for passwords that make it faster and easier for users to sign into apps and websites on any device, and which will let App builders turn them on using a toggle in the dashboard, without touching their code.

“We are also introducing Highly Regulated Identity, a toolset that lets customers safeguard riskier transactions with extra security and policy control, and which will be highly applicable in financial, utility and health care use cases,” Sampaio added.

“We are also announcing a direction integration between Customer Identity Cloud and our Workforce Identity Cloud,” Sampaio said.

In a related announcement, Okta reached out to developers with partnerships with three of the leading developer platforms, DigitalOcean, Netlify, and Vercel.

“These are some of the largest developer platforms out  there, and they have hundreds of thousands of developers on them,” Sampaio said. “We want to meet developers where they are. It’s a growing ecosystem that includes even large platform players like AWS, Azure and GCP.”