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4 Reasons You Need a Single Sign-On Portal

We all love cloud apps. What’s not to love? Any individual cloud app delivers tremendous benefits in terms of cost of ownership, user productivity, and IT agility. And of course, we aren’t just limiting ourselves to one or two apps–56% of organizations use 6 or more SaaS applications[1]—and the number of very small companies using paid cloud apps is expected to triple in the next three years.[2]

But I’m starting to see a downside to this rapid adoption of cloud apps. All these apps are quickly overwhelming IT’s ability to assure security, manage costs and maintain control. I’m seeing multiple problems, including:

  1. Insecure user password practices. It’s impossible for the average user to remember strong passwords for all the cloud services they use. Even tech-savvy users end up taking shortcuts: reusing passwords, creating weak passwords, storing passwords in email, and even writing down passwords and pasting them to their monitors.
  2. Inability to manage access. In many companies, IT has to scramble to revoke a departing employee’s access to cloud apps—and, sometimes, apps can slip through the cracks. Often, users provision themselves for cloud apps—and IT has no idea that company data is being housed in yet another datacenter.
  3. Inefficient employees and lost productivity. In the days of desktop-based applications, it was easy for employees to find and launch the tools they needed to use. Now, employees have to constantly hunt for login URLs and remember multiple usernames and passwords.
  4. Lack of cross-service IT efficiencies. With multiple cloud services to manage for every user, IT is unable to share settings or create efficiencies across them all. They have to manage multiple vendors with multiple control panels, multiple passwords and multiple sources of support—as well as the mobility, integration and security complexities introduced by each one.

But there is a solution. A single sign-on service can give your employees a single portal with one-click access to all their cloud apps. And because they only have to remember one login and one password, they can more easily comply with strong password policies.

Your IT staff will also love it. That’s because they can quickly build a portal to all the cloud apps your employees use—and just as quickly revoke access to the portal when employees leave.

Everyone’s more efficient and more productive. For business owners, SSO is a real win-win-win.

We recently launched Intermedia AppID as an SSO solution made specifically for SMBs. If you already use Intermedia services, it’s an easy add-on. And if you’re new to Intermedia, you can get AppID as a standalone service. Learn more about Intermedia AppID.

 

[1] Cloud Computing Demands Enterprise-class Password Management and Security, Enterprise Strategy Group, April 2013

[2] Microsoft SMB Business in the Cloud Report, 2012

About Carles Cabre

Carles Cabre is Intermedia's head of product marketing for Cloud Server and Private Cloud.