MFA, SSO, And Learning The Dangers Of Not Using Either One

What Is Single Sign On?

Single sign on, often abbreviated to SSO, is pretty self-explanatory. Let’s apply the concept to a workplace computer – think of your work, for example.

Assume that you’re responsible for your work email, inventory management updates, and, of course, logging on the computer in the first place. In traditional situations – those without the help of an identity and access management tool like OneLogin – you’d first have to enter a username, then a password …

Then visit the email inbox, enter a username, then a password …

Then visit the inventory management system, enter a user-name, then a password …

Ad nauseam, for however many accounts your employer finds it necessary to log on to. But wait – wouldn’t it be so much easier to use the same user-name and password, so they’re not forgotten as easily?

This is certainly more convenient than holding different login credentials for each system you visit, though it opens your employer up to a world of cybersecurity issues. Simply guess that user-name and password just one time, and your employer could face – quite literally – hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses. Convenience is great, and all, in the workplace, as saving just one minute each time you login equals a few hours of gained work time per year of employment.

OneLogin is geared towards keeping every account login credential safe, secure, and centralized, meaning you could log in to workplace computers using nothing more than a card swipe, fingerprint, face identification, or answering questions about yourself.

Besides, traditional forms of managing login credentials and identities is downright expensive, not to mention confusing.

What Is Multifactor Authentication?

Let’s say you’re withdrawing money from an ATM. You insert the card, type your PIN number, get your money, and the transaction’s completed.

Ask yourself – what steps are involved in authenticating yourself, authenticating that card’s use, effectively telling the ATM handling the transaction that you are, in fact, authorized to use it.

When you enter login credentials on a workplace computer, tablet, terminal, or another device, you’re effectively telling that technology you are who you say you are. However, when it comes to picking safe, secure passwords, many people enter letters, symbols, and numbers that are virtually impossible to forget.

Good comes with bad – impossible to forget means that those passwords are likely incredibly easy to guess, which is something cybercriminals invest lots of time in. Just one branch of a manufacturers’ information can range from $190,000 to upwards of $750,000.

Even if you do have a weak password – which you shouldn’t – multifactor authentication, or MFA, helps protect against unauthorized use. All MFA means is – let’s go back to the ATM example – entering a four-digit PIN is one-factor authentication; if the ATM asked for the last four digits of your Social Security number, you’d have two-factor (multi-factor) authentication in place.

It seems simple, but this type of authentication works incredibly well for protecting against unwanted use.

One last thing – manufacturers focus on actually constructing products, not basic services it could easily outsource. However, outsourcing to parties outside of your organization places your business and its information at risk. OneLogin helps distribute information system permissions to appropriate service providers.

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