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Intuit protects 1,000,000+ businesses with Twilio

Intuit Online Payroll protects small businesses from online security threats with two-factor authentication built on Twilio.

The Results
Intuit product users
Countries served by Intuit product portfolio
Afternoon needed to build a working protoype with Twilio

Intuit makes it easy for business owners to pay employees. Intuit powers payroll for more than 1 million small businesses and has become the leader in online payroll solutions. Intuit empowers companies to run payroll in just minutes, with an easy online interface and at a low cost.

Powering the payroll business

As a payroll provider, Intuit stores sensitive information for its small business customers. Looking to stay ahead of online fraud, Intuit wanted to implement an additional layer of security to protect their customers' sensitive data. "As Intuit, we need to be on the forefront of online security technology," said Ariege Misherghi, product manager at Intuit Online Payroll.

Staying secure with Twilio Two-Factor Authentication

To address this security need, Intuit turned to Twilio's phone and text messaging APIs to provide another layer of protection. When an online user attempts to change sensitive data, Intuit sends a verification code to the user's phone, via phone call or SMS, to provide out-of-band identity verification. By proving that the online user is in possession of their phone, Intuit thwarts would-be identity thieves with minimal inconvenience to legitimate customers.

For Intuit, Twilio proved to be the fastest way to move its new security feature to the cloud. "With Twilio, we got all the support we needed, and in a timely and efficient manner," said Misherghi. "Using Twilio, we built both phone call and text-messaging features with just one API and one vendor, which saves time and money." Intuit also identified Twilio as the most cost-efficient option, moving from idea to production with no up-front capital expenses.

We’re very confident about the solution we’ve developed to protect sensitive information and prevent fraud, and we couldn’t have done that successfully without Twilio on the backend.

Ariege Misherghi, Product Manager, Intuit Online Payroll

Providing identity protection and a great customer experience

Knowing that onerous security features can be a stumbling block for users, the experience for Intuit's customers was paramount. Intuit built the initial proof-of-concept in one afternoon with Twilio's APIs. It then rapidly moved to usability testing and deployment to an initial set of pilot users. "Given the urgency around changing payroll information for employees before a payroll run, it was very important to find a low-impact solution. We got great feedback from initial customers," explained Misherghi. With that feedback, Intuit made the decision to deploy the solution to its entire Intuit Online Payroll customer base.

Using Twilio for identity protection represented the first deployment of Twilio within Intuit, but the project ignited the imagination of product managers across the company. "We're already thinking about how we can use Twilio to improve the customer experience in other areas of Intuit Online Payroll, and across Intuit," said Misherghi.