SSO and password managers: why you should have both

Single sign-on (SSO) and password management make a great team. By consolidating the number of logins you need to keep track of, SSO reduces the number of entry points that need to be secured. Team members can then use a password manager to create, store, and autofill strong credentials for any account that isn’t supported by the SSO – and for the SSO itself.

What is SSO?

Single sign-on (SSO) is a way of letting users access services like websites and software, without having to enter unique credentials for each account. Using SSO in the workplace is helpful as it minimizes the number of logins necessary for each website and service. Team members can use a single, strongly vetted identity to access all the services supported by the SSO provider and approved by their IT administrator.

By reducing the number of passwords in circulation, single sign-on condenses your company’s attack surface. That makes it easier to monitor and manage access while providing employees with a simpler, more streamlined login experience.

The differences between password management and single sign-on

At first glance, it can seem like SSO and password managers serve the same purpose. While both give team members a single login that makes it easy for them to sign in to multiple accounts required to do their job, they also have unique offerings that make them complimentary to your business’s security plan.

For example, a password manager can securely store, autofill, and share passwords for any online account – not just the ones supported by your SSO provider. 1Password also supports other kinds of digital secrets, like credit card numbers, addresses, developer SSH keys, and more.

SSO and password managers also have different security models. For example, you need both your account password and an additional encryption ingredient called the Secret Key to sign in to 1Password and decrypt your private data.

How 1Password and SSO work together

Using SSO and a password manager together will improve your team members’ security for both their work and personal accounts. Using a strong and unique password to protect their SSO account is important because it connects to many of the services they use for work. Enter 1Password. A password manager makes it easy to create, and use strong passwords for every account, while also providing a safe and convenient place to store them.

A password manager keeps your team secure while they use shadow IT

Shadow IT refers to accounts workers use without their company’s knowledge or permission. Team members often create these accounts to help them complete their job more efficiently. Shadow IT accounts can include SaaS software, apps, plugins, developer tools, and more. These accounts are often created outside of SSO and use a traditional username and password.

While these accounts may be important to workers’ productivity, it’s still important to keep them secure. If they’re protected by weak, or duplicate passwords, attackers could find a way to exploit them and access sensitive company information – all without the IT team being aware of a potential breach. A password manager like 1Password empowers everyone to protect all of their accounts with strong, unique passwords.

Giving employees the tools and knowledge to keep all of their accounts safe encourages them to practice good security habits in all aspects of their job. That in turn helps keep your business more secure.

1Password for work and home

Most SSO solutions are aimed at businesses and therefore designed to be used at work. A password manager like 1Password can help team members secure their personal accounts as well. With 1Password Business, every employee gets a free 1Password Families account so they can stay secure at both work and home. This helps reinforce good security habits across their digital life.

Better together

SSO and password managers are a perfect pair – you shouldn’t have to choose one or the other. A password manager can fill the gaps left by SSO and improve the security of SSO itself. Using 1Password with any single sign-on solution helps fortify the accounts covered by the SSO provider, protect the accounts that exist outside of it, and allow team members to secure everything they use in their personal life, too.

Try 1Password for free and discover the benefits of using SSO and an enterprise password manager together.