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Fully comprehensive: Using Azure AD B2C to deliver a seamless and secure customer experience for a leading UK insurer

Summary

When our client, one of the UK’s largest insurers and financial service organisations, wanted to secure and streamline online customer experiences, it turned to Microsoft and ThirdSpace to deploy Azure Active Directory B2C.

ThirdSpace helped design and deploy Microsoft’s leading cloud-based B2C technology, integrating it with the insurer’s existing identity processes and its front-end website.

ThirdSpace also provided ongoing managed support services for the organisation’s B2C architecture – providing peace of mind through proactive monitoring and expert incident response.

With Azure AD B2C in place, this insurer is now able to offer its customers all the modern benefits of single sign-on and self-service password reset, along with the enhanced security that comes from holding customer credentials in the Azure cloud.

Results

  • Customer credentials securely held in the Azure cloud.
  • Access to Azure’s global intelligence on compromised credentials.
  • Seamless single sign-on across multiple customer insurance products.
  • A fully joined-up and intuitive customer user experience.
  • Fully customisable and branded customer journeys.
  • Self-service password reset (SSPR) to alleviate IT helpdesk pressures.
  • Seamless integration with front-end client website and on-premises active directory.
  • Eliminated password fatigue by allowing social network user logins.
  • Managed support to deal with issues quickly and reduce the need for in-house resources.

The challenge

Our client recognised that if it wanted to remain a leader in customer service, it needed to cater for the way modern users want to access and consume data and services – accessing their accounts and insurance policies from wherever they want and from any device.

As part of its digital transformation journey, the organisation began an ambitious project with multiple stakeholders that spanned all areas of the business – from employee training, website design, cloud adoption, customer experience and more.

Part of this project was focused around the ‘digital revolution to its customer services’, with specific aims to improve:

  • Joined-up services
  • Customer account security
  • Responsiveness to change
  • Improved customer data and intelligence

Our client had grown rapidly over the years through multiple mergers and acquisitions – now offering a broad mix of insurance and investment products.

Many of its customers and members were carrying multiple insurance policies across home, car, travel and more.

The most pressing challenges our client wanted to tackle through digital transformation focused on:

  • Eliminating the need for customers to re-login with different credentials to access different insurance policies across its various websites and offerings – bringing all policies together under one account
  • Automating simple customer help desk tickets for frequent issues, such as forgotten passwords
  • Providing users secure access to apps and policies, guarding against cyber threats from compromised credentials

The organisation needed to find a solution that would address these customer access and security challenges all while seamlessly integrating with its front-end website.

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The solution

The client put their project out to tender, with Microsoft and a few other major vendors in the running to be selected.

After careful consideration, the insurer selected Microsoft and the Azure AD B2C solution. This was due to the cloud capability and powerful security functionality offered through the Azure platform, as well as the easy integration with the organisation’s existing Microsoft technologies – yielding the synergistic benefits of a truly holistic approach.

“The engagement began with a discovery workshop, detailing what the client needed from its customer experience as well as from an identity and security perspective.”

When the insurer decided to deploy Microsoft’s Azure AD B2C technology, the product was still in Microsoft’s ‘private preview’ mode at the time and not a fully finished product.

As a leading and highly trusted Microsoft partner for identity and security solutions, the company was referred to ThirdSpace for the consultation and implementation of the project. Not only did ThirdSpace help Microsoft hone and fine-tune the B2C product in the early stages, but we also ensured the solution was properly integrated with the client’s existing architecture.

The engagement began with a discovery workshop, detailing what the client needed from its customer experience as well as from an identity and security perspective. ThirdSpace was then able to deliver a detailed solution design and technical implementation plan.

Upon the successful project completion and deployment of Azure AD B2C, our client was able to realise the following key benefits:

Robust Azure cloud identity and security protection

Our client was able to put much more robust customer identity and security controls into place to mitigate threats from hacks and compromised credentials.

Apart from the huge benefits of using the Azure cloud as a secure credentials store for all of the organisation’s customer records, it was also able to integrate the ‘have I been pwned’ public API to stop users setting already compromised credentials.

Seamless single sign-on and user self-service password reset

A major benefit of the B2C deployment involved providing single sign-on (SSO) for the organisation’s customers, essentially allowing them to use the same login across multiple applications and insurance products.

Enabling this seamless SSO experience required the creation of several custom user flows in Azure AD B2C that supported common user journeys. ThirdSpace worked closely with the client to define and create custom user flows within B2C, enabling improvements to the online user experience.

ThirdSpace also set up a custom password reset policy within our client’s tenant to allow its customers to reset their passwords using the ‘self-service password reset’ (SSPR) functionality.

This feature improved the online customer experience while also automating repetitive tasks that had previously put a strain on the internal IT support team.

Managed Support Services

Once the B2C deployment was complete, the insurer decided to further engage with ThirdSpace for premium managed support services.

This enabled it to outsource proactive monitoring, maintenance and incident response to trained experts that would be on-hand whenever needed – providing peace of mind and reducing costs on training and employing skilled resources in-house.

The ThirdSpace support team provide the client with a highly professional and personal service that serves as a virtual extension of its in-house team, continually collaborating to optimise performance for its customers.

Our client also benefited from ThirdSpace’s hyper-care support offering, meaning they received intensive support through the roll-out period followed by weekly B2C system health checks.

 

Conclusion

Azure AD B2C has enabled our client to bring Microsoft’s expertise in identity and access management to its consumer-facing interactions. Built on the Azure Active Directory platform, the insurer is now able to deliver seamless, personalised customer experiences with the confidence that its service is reliable, secure and GDPR compliant using single sign-on.

 

Next steps

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Our client is a leading financial services provider, with more than 5 million customers and over 5,500 employees.

They offer a variety of insurance, financial investment, pension and retirement products to customers across the UK and Ireland.

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