Single Sign-On (SSO), a subcomponent within Identity and Access Management (IAM), has traditionally been viewed as the ability to login to web apps like Salesforce, Dropbox, and Slack using one set of credentials. In the modern era of cloud identity management, many IT admins are asking what is single sign-on for this era?
First generation SSO has been enthusiastically embraced by end users and IT admins. SSO has made the end user’s life simpler by reducing the number of passwords they need to access their resources. IT admins have been enjoying finer control and visibility over their users’ web application logins thanks to this first generation view of SSO. However, SSO is not a perfect solution for improved IAM or cloud identity management when you consider the broader IT landscape.
In this blog post, we look at how SSO was possible in the past, and then we’ll examine some of the challenges with this approach to SSO, and then talk about what the modern incarnation of single sign-on looks like.
Single Sign-On in the Past
A version of SSO existed a couple decades ago. In the late 1990’s, Microsoft built Active Directory (AD) making sure it functioned best in a Microsoft ecosystem. The on-premise IT environment at the time made it possible for a user to login to their Windows machine and gain access to their apps, network, and data storage as well. This level of SSO was stripped away when Mac and Linux systems started infiltrating the workplace, web-based apps were introduced, and the cloud removed the need to have on-prem infrastructure. Legacy directories, like AD, have struggled to connect identities to the cloud, and True SSO™ has just not been possible like it was in the past.
Challenges with SSO Providers
Web-based SSO providers emerged in response to the growing number of cloud-based apps. While these providers make it possible to easily login to a variety of web-based apps, users and IT admins are still unsatisfied. Web-based SSO providers don’t connect users to the many on-prem resources IT environments are still using like Windows, Mac, (Read more...)
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from JumpCloud authored by Natalie Bluhm. Read the original post at: https://jumpcloud.com/blog/what-is-single-sign-on/