As part of IdentityNORTH’s mandate to promote Canadian innovations and organisations, we have launched the ‘Startup Spotlight.’ Proudly supported by TD Bank, this series shines a light on emerging Canadian companies who are driving innovation across the digital ID ecosystem.   

Bioconnect

Headquartered in Toronto, BioConnect provides an enterprise biometric authentication and security platform to strengthen trust in verifying identity across physical, IOT and digital applications. With over 1,600 customers and 60 partnerships globally, BioConnect is enabling trust in the connected world. 

What’s the Story?

The founders of BioConnect noticed a large problem of fraud and cybercrime stemming from people gaining access to things using what they refer to as ‘suspect identity’ (i.e. keys, cards, fobs, passwords or tokens). By providing identity assurance using biometrics at the point of access, BioConnect solves for four main access control use cases: people getting through physical doors, accessing data center cages and cabinets, accessing digital and business applications and, most recently, unifying access – allowing people to access physical spaces with digital or mobile applications. 

Who Benefits? 

Both the leaders of an organization and the end users benefit. The organization benefits from decreased amounts of fraud and cybercrime, and they obtain peace of mind that their business, along with its most important assets, are safe. The end user benefits from the added convenience to current solutions. They no longer have to carry around cards, keys or tokens –  they simply use themselves to gain access. Additionally, BioConnect’s banking customers specifically benefit from their solution, as the banks are able to provide a higher level of identity assurance to their end customers (commercial banking clients) for services such as access to critical applications and money movement.

As a platform, BioConnect is part of the building blocks making it possible for digital identity to live in today’s world – by allowing people to upgrade to digital identity that fits within the infrastructure of yesterday, today and tomorrow. 

What’s the Future of Identity?

The biggest opportunity in digital identity, as seen by BioConnect, is twofold, First, determining how digital identity can solve for mistrust between an enterprise, organization, or entity and the user. Secondly, there is an opportunity to allow the user to decide what information is shared with different entities that they interact with, and when, as well as give them the right to own their identity.  

Today’s infrastructure stands as the biggest challenge, and needs to be upgraded to accommodate the future of digital identity. As a platform, BioConnect is part of the building blocks making it possible for digital identity to live in today’s world – by allowing people to upgrade to digital identity that fits within the infrastructure of yesterday, today and tomorrow. 

Among BioConnect’s offerings is biometric access control for door security.

What is the ecosystem and who are the other players?

BioConnect’s partner ecosystem helps drive success for its customers, growth and sustainability of its business. The company leverages the strategic value of different partner types (system integrators, technology providers, industry partners, etc). to deliver differentiated value from others in the industry. 

Of the various identity players in the current ecosystem, BioConnect believes the banks are the most important, and wants to see private enterprise and financial institutions lead the ecosystem in identity service providers. This is because they have already established trust with their end users. Financial institutions have built their culture around understanding and learning how to be a trusted source, and their business centres on safeguarding trust and information, which BioConnect can build on for their identity utility activities. 

What’s Next? 

There are many successful identity models that could be replicated or improved upon. BioConnect is taking an alternate approach, recognizing that identity lives in both the digital and the physical world, and there has to be unification of identity across these realms. Whether you are activating an online account or getting into an autonomous vehicle, BioConnect is focused on becoming the unique platform that allows for this unification to happen.

Over the years, BioConnect has seen many successes. It has been implemented in approximately 80 per cent of the largest data centers across the globe, and has been deployed in BMO’s Online Business Banking to replace current tokens for customer authentication of login and wire transfers. BioConnect works with some of the largest technology and financial services companies, protecting their physical and digital assets.