What is the difference between network authentication and SSO?

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  • 19-Aug-2009
  • 15-Jan-2014


SecureLogin SSO
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What is the difference between network authentication and SSO?



Authentication is another word for verifying logon credentials before granting access to a network or system e.g. checking the password is correct, verifying fingerprint scan etc.

Network authentication is the process of gaining access to the organization’s network, typically when the PC boots up and the user is prompted to login to Microsoft ADS or Novell eDirectory, for example. Users typically authenticate to the network using one of the following methods:

  • password;
  • biometric such as a fingerprint or Iris scan;
  • smartcard and PIN; or
  • token.

In contrast, Single Sign-On (SSO) typically starts once a user has authenticated to the network and/or operating system and windows has loaded.

SecureLogin is a suite of components that provides users with seamless access to their applications and resources without the administrative and security overheads associated with managing applications with different usernames and passwords.

It provides fast SSO to all applications that a corporation may be running, including in-house and off the shelf software. Mainframe applications, web-based applications, Java applications, Windows 32-bit applications (and legacy Windows 16-bit applications), and UNIX applications are all supported.

In short, network authentication is the process of logging onto the computer and/or network, whilst SSO handles logon to all the user’s applications after the computer has started up and windows has loaded.