Peter Alexanderson, Founder and CIO
Passwords have been the first line of defense for nearly every enterprise for years. However, in an era where cybercrime is reaching pandemic proportions, this traditional authentication method is proving inadequate to ensure complete data security. All of it also boils down to the fact that in today’s digital age, an internet user is forced to memorize passwords for up to 92 accounts on an average. This is not merely non-viable but also leads to password recycling—reusing passwords across multiple platforms.
What if the static passwords are eliminated from the security paradigm altogether? What if user IDs replaced static passwords for authentication? And, what if each time a user’s account is accessed, they need to affirm that it is them on the other end?
These are the questions that cropped up in Peter Alexanderson’s mind when he started working in the cybersecurity landscape. A cybersecurity veteran and a serial entrepreneur, Alexanderson wanted to get rid of passwords for good, while increasing security by placing the control in the end user’s hand. This led him to lay the foundation of Covr Security, a Malmo-based cybersecurity company, in 2015. “My vision was to allow the end user to authorize all of the transactions that affect their accounts and hence, we developed an app called Covr,” says Alexanderson, now the founder and CIO of the company. It is a unique user-centric authentication solution that provides the ability to prevent unauthorized usage of accounts and personal information. “It is the only advanced cybersecurity platform with two-way authentication that exists today,” he adds. “The app is user-friendly and requires no additional hardware.”
Prior to creating Covr, Alexanderson developed BankID, an electronic identification solution designed specifically for the Swedish banking system.
The solution, which has a 95 percent adoption rate and 7.5 million users, allows financial institutions to authenticate and conclude agreements with individuals over the internet. The success of BankID prompted Alexanderson to go a step further and create a similar solution for the global audience, resulting in the development of Covr.
With Covr, users no longer have to remember complicated passwords or jump through numerous security hoops. They only need to remember a 6-digit access code that they can select themselves. What truly makes the company’s solution distinct is its three-factor, two-channel encryption. “Every time a user’s account is accessed, an authentication request is sent via a secondary channel between the user’s mobile device and the server. This way, Covr offers 100 percent protection from ID theft, phishing, skimming, and credit card hijacking,” affirms Alexanderson. Covr is available both as an off-the-shelf authentication mobile app that can be quickly launched on third-party applications as well as a powerful SDK for hassle-free integration into existing mobile applications. Its utilization spans across gaming sites, cloud storage, e-commerce, and other sectors.
Led by a team of dedicated and forward-thinking individuals that share a common vision—to make the internet a safer place—Covr Security continuously works toward becoming the “go-to” security solution provider. The company frequently upgrades its solution to adapt to the latest customer and security demands. The newest version of the application, for instance, has QR codes that streamline the customer sign-up process as well as ensure ease of use for authorizing transactions.
For the future, the company has plans to roll out new releases of its software with additional features that will enhance user experience as well as simplify the day-to-day banking operations. The company is also planning to expand its geographical footprint across European and Asian markets. “Every year, banks and other financial players spend an enormous amount of money to eradicate frauds. But, in the end, they only fail. Our solution will provide them the much needed bullet-proof security to them and their users,” wraps up Alexanderson.