AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon unveil next-gen mobile authentication platform details

The Mobile Authentication Taskforce, comprised of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon, reveals product details of the next-generation mobile authentication platform at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Formed last year to develop a mobile authentication solution to help protect enterprises and consumers from identity theft, bank fraud, fraudulent purchases and data theft, the Mobile Authentication Taskforce has dedicated resources developing a highly secure and trusted multi-factor authentication platform powered by the carrier networks. The task force vision includes interoperability with GSMA's Mobile Connect technology, according to Alex Sinclair, chief technology officer, GSMA. 

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The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting nearly 800 operators with more than 300 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and internet companies, as well as organisations in adjacent industry sectors.

This solution will deliver a cryptographically verified phone number and profile data for users of authorized applications with their consent, he adds. Authentication security is strengthened by processing unique attributes such as a network verified mobile number, IP address, SIM card attributes, phone number tenure, phone account type and more. In addition, advanced analytics and machine learning capabilities will be used to help assess risk and protect customers.

Registered developers will be able to submit applications through a system using private and permissioned blockchain technology to help ensure application integrity. The U.S.-based carriers want the full power of collective network intelligence in the hands of consumers and businesses to help safeguard online and wireless experiences.

Over the next few weeks, the task force will begin internal trials to test the solution, with a goal of making the solution generally available to consumers by end-of-year. It will launch a website later this year enabling service providers to learn more about the solution and sign up to participate as an application developer.