In our blog this past June we discussed the merits of utilizing SAML as a protocol for sharing a person’s identity between systems. More specifically, we addressed how SAML (leveraging ADFS and Shibboleth as identity providers) can be used for controlling access to your systems, providing a single control point for authentication in your organization. These benefits are why GreyHeller developed
- 1 password vs. multiple passwords (w/ different expirations and controls)
- Reduction in lost, stolen, or weak passwords
- Improved adoption of Fluid pages and overall mobility
Now that we’ve addressed the benefits – we will now discuss the consequences of not utilizing SSO
While expensive, embarrassing, and overall damaging to your reputation, security breaches are more likely to capture the headlines. However, there are opportunity costs that (while not as headline-grabbing as a breach) you should be keenly aware of:
1) Over 50% of support calls are generally related to password resets
Every IT person can relate to this. The stopping and starting of your daily objectives due to constant user interruptions, all needing the same thing – a password reset or an unlocking of an account due to too many incorrect login attempts.
2) Loss of productivity PLUS the troubleshooting of end-user authentication issues can take up to 30 minutes
Now that we know what IT’s biggest time waster is, lets break down that lost time. If your user is locked out of their account, they are useless – merely sitting at their desk waiting to be rescued. This is lost productivity that can be costly if aggregated across the organization throughout the year. The 30 minute time loss includes:
- Time spent attempting to get into the system
- Productivity loss on the part of the user waiting for their access
- The help desk administrator’s time spent troubleshooting the issue
Given that (on average) every user in your organization is requesting (1) password reset each month – this lost productivity can be staggering.
3) Higher Education institutions are the most susceptible to this waste
According to a 2014 Forrester study of one large US-based university, “the university’s users completed an average of nearly 8,000 password resets per month and that nearly 50% of users requesting a password reset could not complete that action via self-service.” That is 4,000 individually executed password resets each month!
Considering the productivity loss for IT (chasing down password issues) Forrester Research went on to state “the average help desk labor cost for a single password reset is about $70.” Does this sound like an efficient use of valuable budget to you?