Amazon Adoption of SAML a Big Step Forward for Authentication Protocol

December 30th, 2013   /     /   Smarter Identity

Amazon’s recent decision to embrace the Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) will squash any remaining doubts as to SAML’s ability to catch fire across the enterprise. SAML eliminates passwords and instead uses digital signatures to establish trust between the identity provider and an application.

SAML facilitates federated single-sign on (SSO), which lets users log into Amazon Web Services from other SAML-compliant identity providers. This allows for secure user movement across web applications, ensuring that authorized users are in fact who they claim to be.

Recently, we sat down with our very own Business Development Director Mario Tarabbia to discuss the implications of Amazon’s decision to implement SAML. As Tarabbia explained, the decision is groundbreaking due to the fact that the protocol’s adoption amongst many businesses thus far has been slow due in part to technical and business-related limitations. Technically speaking, SAML requires advanced planning to implement as it affects the core of an application.

On the business side, Tarabbia said, SAML is often times overlooked as it has historically not been listed as a mandatory requirement. People were just not thinking about it when making purchasing decisions.

“If cloud vendors can sell their solution without needing a feature like SAML, then they’re going to do it.” Tarabbia said. “However, we’re now seeing more and more enterprises demanding SAML as a feature and this trend is only going to grow now that AWS has adopted the standard.”

Now, more than ever, companies are backing vendors that support the SAML protocol before actually purchasing an application. As a result, SAML is overcoming many of the business hurdles that previously held it back from mainstream success.

It is important to note that SAML is not just for use at the large enterprise level. Small businesses can benefit from secure login as well. As explained by Tarabbia, Amazon’s decision to implement single sign-on will cause a ripple effect in which small businesses will view SAML as a valid security option. In fact, a domino effect is being predicted in the industry as deployment costs have plummeted in recent years.

Are you curious about how SAML can benefit your enterprise? For a detailed look at how OneLogin can help you implement the SAML protocol, check out our free open-source SAML Toolkits.

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About the Author

Elias Terman is a seasoned product and marketing leader with over 20 years of technology marketing experience including IT Security, enterprise software, and SaaS startups in the U.S. and abroad. Prior to OneLogin, he ran product marketing for SnapLogic, where he helped establish them as the leading independent cloud integration vendor. At OneLogin, He is responsible for product and partner marketing, as well as press and analyst relations.

View all posts by Elias Terman