As an Internet user, you might have to log in to many web or cloud-based applications to create a document, record a video, check emails, and so on. It is cumbersome to remember username and password credentials for each of them. Often, users choose a simpler password they might remember every time. Even a few note them in their books or store them in their emails, making them accessible by hackers.
That’s when SSO technology comes to the rescue.
What is SSO?
SSO stands for Single Sign-on. Using SSO, login screens of different SaaS application suite is merged into one screen. It prevents you from the inconvenience of logging separately into applications of varying technology or domains.
For example, take a similar scenario in real life when a student needs to show their Id-card to enter college. Now, if they are required to display this Id-card every time they need to move across the college premises. It would not be pleasant for the students. The same is the case with each customer accessing your applications.
Using this SSO technology, users can use their Gmail account to log in to their multiple applications improving the overall customer experience and saving time.
Top advantages of using SSO
Many people suggest that using SSO technology can risk the security of a customer. But it is the case otherwise. Below we have listed down few benefits of using SSO.
Using the strongest password
Now, the user needs to remember only one password to log into several applications. Instead, they can choose a password that doesn’t relate to them or is among the common passwords(like Passwords or passwords) usually used by many people.
Now they can choose a password that is a combination of unique characters like $, #, !, numbers and characters. Something like fse$12#tyu$. It makes it difficult to crack these credentials and hack the applications.
Also, there are fewer chances of the password getting reused by the customer for another application.
Satisfied customer experience
Great satisfactory customer experience is the essential benefit that one gets by using SSO. The customer doesn’t need to spend time logging in to a new application saving time and energy.
The user becomes loyal to the product/service, and there are better chances of them turning into a life-long customer.
Better control of security compliance
Using SSO, the company’s infrastructure team can monitor what different applications are used by their employees. Also, it reduces the chances of stealing any employee’s credentials. As an added advantage, the IT team can easily ensure that the employees follow local and global compliance.
Enhanced security layer
Nowadays, many companies use pin-generating devices as an additional security layer when they log in to the companies system. It is an example of Multi-factor authentications(MFA). The employee will be the only person having this device. It ensures that the right person is entering the companies system.
Using SSO, these companies can use MFA at the company application’s entry point instead of separately entering for different internal applications.
Lesser time for password recovery
Now the IT teams won’t need to spend more time recovering the password for different applications. Also, it would be easier to reset the password using Single Sign-on.
Also, users or employees will spend less time while logging into multiple applications. With SSO, companies can achieve their goals of better security and improved productivity.
How to use SSO?
SSO works on mutual trust between the Service provider(application) and an Identity provider(like Google).
- Whenever a user wants to enter the application, they will type in that URL in their browser.
- Then you will get options to either use their separate login details or use Google credentials to enter the system, as shown below.
Figure: Login screen to CustomerSuccessBox using SSO
3. Now when you select Google, it will take you to the Google account login page. If you are signed in to Google using another window, it will not prompt you to enter the details again. But it will authenticate your details with Google in either case.
4. Google will send a token to the service provider to confirm the authentication of the user. Once the service provider, in this case, the CustomerSuccessBox, validates it, the user is granted access to the system.
When to use SSO?
With the evolutions of more SaaS-based applications, authentication is needed to use each of them. It can take a lot of time for the user to log in separately each time. So in all cases, when a company uses a set of applications, they can use SSO technology as an authentication mechanism to reduce the time for login and achieve improved security.
When combined with Multi-factor authentication, SSO can prove to be crucial in managing the access given to any user. Also, it saves a high cost incurred by the service provider for maintaining user details.