SSO vs Federation: Which To Opt And Which To Not

It has always seemed to be a tough call while choosing between Federation and SSO. So, let’s break the ice by understanding the difference between Single Sign On and Federation and its areas of applications.

There was a time when we liked passwords. Yes, it is true. We even called them as our best friends from the aspects of security. They secured our accounts and we were really happy with them. Gradually, time passed and technology advanced, and we started to live with multiple discrete accounts. And so, passwords proved to be troublesome to us. In fact, trying to deal with passwords was more like dream turned nightmare (I’m sure you can relate with my words).

Very important information: It was found out by an English research team that an average person nearly deals with 27 separate accounts in general.

Moreover, studies show that 3 out of 4 customers forget their passwords. Obviously, there was a need for a technology which could omit or at least decrease the frequency of use of passwords. Hence, Federation and Single Sign On techniques were introduced.

Now, when talking about these techniques, It is quite fun being engulfed with such awesome techniques which surely cured the password fatigue syndrome but it is needed that businesses should be supplied with proper understanding about its applications and implications. So, here we are going to move forward by clearing some myths and understanding about Federation and SSO in a superior way.

Both of the concepts are widely accepted and are different. You want to know how?

Federation works for different enterprises while SSO for an organization.

Hence, organizations which are linked with each other use federation for providing authentication to users on basis of mutual trust. When an organization plays as identity provider, the other businesses play as receivers giving authentication to users.

On the other hand, Single sign-on works for an organization, where it handles or precisely shares sessions of multiple websites of a single organization (Google is one of the best examples of SSO implementation). Jumping again to federation, it removes the need for multiple ID and password combinations for different websites while making a group of organizations being dependable on a single set of ID and password (Believe, that’s gives you a clear notion).

Extra perk: Social login is the best example for federation

Now let’s point our fingers at SSO. They (SSO) are different depending upon their application area. A web SSO completely justifies the above introduced definition but an enterprise SSO is more of an in-house organization player. More importantly, it keeps in contact onto workstations of employees (the software needs to be installed on every workstation).

Hence, these varieties in techniques will force you to churn your rational brain about your choice. So, it’s better to keep a track of your business needs to take home the perfect SSO product.

A Tip for you: Though, every product has its own place in the market, it is recommended to use a blend of mobile SSO and web SSO (or you may lag behind time).

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