How Single Sign-On will impact customers
Authentication problems are among the top issues users of cloud technology encounter. Password reset requests consist 30% of calls made to the help desk, according to Avatier’s research. As the world goes widely mobile, password and identity management becomes imperative for people and organizations.
Single sign-on (SSO) software is one solution that comes to mind. Whether for work or play, this capability is best for those who deal with multiple passwords and logins in a day. It allows users to streamline their passwords for improved productivity and added security. Moreover, it provides several other benefits to customers, from individuals and small businesses to large enterprises.
More organized digital lives
Statista says there were 2.8 million and 2.2 million apps available on Google Play and Apple Store, respectively, as of March 2017. With the popularity of social media, it is safe to say that each consumer device has at least one app. On the business side, companies rely more on web and cloud applications. These digital trends enhance lifestyles and operations, but they come with a side effect that is often overlooked: too many identities and passwords for people to remember.
Single sign-on lets users access multiple apps through one set of login credentials. It is like a switch that activates all the appliances and gadgets found in a smart home. Through this solution, anyone can declutter their digital lives a bit. Imagine having to deal with one instead of 27 different passwords* with varying levels of importance, right?
Added convenience and productivity boost
Again, users will be able to enjoy the convenience of remembering a single password for everything. But they might only see the benefit in action once they have been using the service daily. The accumulated effect counts as saved time on switching from one tool to another. It then translates to more streamlined workflows.
At the end of the day, employees will be able to accommodate other tasks just by freeing up the headspace once reserved for remembering unique identification codes. In this case, SSO can also be considered a productivity booster.
Avatier’s research adds that an SSO service reduces SaaS licensing costs by 30%. With a single sign-on portal, it will be easy to eliminate redundant processes. This bit is also good news for tech teams, as the solution lessens calls to support.
Of course, the software itself entails affordable upfront costs, so even small to midsize businesses need not worry about breaking the bank. If companies are hiring part-time IT staff, they will have to pay for a password reset should someone leaves. With a solution, they can just remove access from a central point. It means the cost of a security risk, such as portal breach, is lowered.
Safer and more secure experience
There are two benefits of SSO from a security POV. First, it helps businesses reduce the risk of security breach since the likelihood of employees using weak passwords is now under control. Second, SSO implementation helps users maintain compliance.
Account protection also raises the bar for data protection.Think about how many passwords are dumped online during resets. Due to this reason, password reuse attacks are at an all-time high, according to OneLogin. To mitigate this risk, providers have introduced the likes of adaptive authentication and improving user experience through the implementation of one-time password logins. Such tactics measure the risk of a login attempt.
Lastly, data retention is important, so SSO implementation should be a part of continuous monitoring. The key is to train and engage all users during rollout and inculcate in them the security and retention practices at the outset.
Cloud technologies are getting more sophisticated and personal. Cyber criminals are also raising their game. SSO appears to be an innovative solution for what users have to deal with now and in the near future. We might even see its more high-end iteration in the next decade when passwords as know them become obsolete. With respect to managing our digital lives, it plays an important role and will continue to do so. The challenge for providers is to come up with similar or more advanced tactics as the examples mentioned to continuously improve UX.
* The average number of passwords per person in 2016
Ram Kumar is the founder of an e-commerce company. He is passionate about online customer acquisition, Data analytics, and project management and relishes the opportunity to discuss, write and share his thoughts on these subjects.