Why single sign-on is so expensive and what you can do to reduce costs

Author(s): 
Jessica D. Moore, Engagement Manager, Vlad Oprica, Lead Architect and Senior Developer, Dave Gallerizzo, CEO, Fig Leaf Software

Abstract
Implementing SSO is often expensive, and depending on your technical prowess, it may be hard to understand why. In this paper, we’ll explain the basic technical challenge of SSO, the differences between a simple and a complex integration, and how to achieve what your business needs with the least cost and the fewest headaches. We’ll focus on issues around developing custom single sign-on solutions for public websites and intranets, which presents different challenges from other scenarios such as SSO for internal business operations. We discuss the intersection of security and analytics with SSO. Finally, we offer useful tips derived from our experience with SSO integration, which you can use as a checklist to guide you through a successful SSO project.

 

Keywords:
SSO, single sign-on, integration, login, authentication, cost

 

Jessica D. Moore is an Engagement Manager at Fig Leaf Software, with 18 years of expertise in user experience design and a focus on usability and accessibility. She has presented at conferences for the Usability Professionals’ Association and ASIS&T, and at Washington D.C.’s Mobile UX Camp. She has served as a product owner on several agile development teams tasked with implementing SSO and data integrations, across different CMS and third-party systems. She has an MFA in Art and Visual Technology from George Mason University, and a BA in English from Grinnell College. When she’s not resolving issues with SSO integrations or helping design websites, she works at painting and writing, and enjoys sunsets from her canoe.

 

Vlad Oprica is a Lead Architect and Senior Developer at Fig Leaf Software. He has worked as a developer for nine years, during which he built numerous sites using several programming frameworks, primarily ASP.NET and JavaScript. He also has a strong background in front-end development and design, using HTML, CSS and Photoshop. He has extensive experience with content management systems such as Ektron, Episerver and Sitefinity, and has delivered highly customised website functionality and features to many clients over the years. He is also well-versed in third-party data integrations involving AMS and CRM systems, such as NetForum, Membersuite and Microsoft Dynamics. During his tenure at Fig Leaf Software, he also acquired certifications in SharePoint administration and Agile Scrum methodology. In his spare time, he enjoys keeping up with the latest web technologies, working on creative visual designs, learning foreign languages and playing tennis.
 

Dave Gallerizzo is the CEO of Fig Leaf Software, a leading digital agency with an international customer base. He also serves as a member of the Board of Directors. His prior responsibility was as Vice President of Fig Leaf Software’s Consulting Services division. This division was responsible for all aspects of the company’s services-based practices. During his tenure as head of Consulting Services, prior to his assumption of the position of CEO, the division saw yearly substantial growth over a seven-year period. He maintains enterprise certifications on the Drupal, Adobe Coldfusion, Amazon AWS, Google Apps, Google Maps and Google Search Appliance platforms and continues to teach a variety of technical classes on a regular basis, including: Acquia Site Building with Drupal, Acquia Drupal Layout and Theming, PHP for Drupal Developers, Acquia Drupal Module Development, Advanced ColdFusion Development, Administering ColdFusion Servers, Google Apps Deployment, Google Search Appliance Deployment, jQuery and Developing for the CommonSpot CMS platform. His academic credentials include a Bachelors of Science in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, with minors in Economics and Mathematics. He retired with 24 years of service from the United States Marines Corps, reserve component, in 2011. During his tenure of service he held enlisted and officer ranks, in both the Light Armored Reconnaissance and Combat Engineer fields, and obtained a final rank of Chief Warrant Officer 2.

 

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