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eModeration Ltd is a global social media management agency, working with some of the world’s best known brands and agencies. The company provides multi-lingual community management and content moderation services, social media consultancy and crisis management simulations and training to clients in the TV, entertainment and digital publishing industry as well as blue chip clients hosting online communities.
Over the past four years, eModeration has experienced more than 500% growth in staff size. Most of the staff is located off-site.
“Our employees manage and moderate clients’ social media sites from their home offices,” said Paul Elson, Technology Manager at eModeration. “They access and manage web applications such as Twitter, Facebook and others on behalf of our customers, meeting a critical need for these companies and agencies to maintain a strong online presence and interact with their own clientele through social media.”
Most of eModeration’s clients have between 3 to 15 applications to manage. “Our remote staff must have secure access to those applications in order to effectively manage and moderate client communities.” he said.
Along with eModeration’s phenomenal growth have come several challenges. Firstly, project scale and size: the company now needs to provide not tens, but hundreds of staff with rapid access to clients’ web applications.
“We need to have the most efficient way possible of rapidly deploying hundreds of staff profiles onto client projects” said Paul. “Creating separate email accounts with separate logins and credentials for each employee is way too time-consuming. OneLogin enables us to bulk upload all credentials in a matter of minutes.”
Second, because of the nature of the services eModeration provides, maintaining strict security policies is essential.
“Our staff has complete access to the various domains and can speak to the public on our clients’ behalf,” said Paul. As a result, trust is of paramount importance. “Without proper security policies in place, we would not have earned our clients’ trust.”
Meanwhile, the company’s former single sign-on solution seemed to be struggling to meet our needs. It was clear that the larger, more complex company which eModeration had become would need a future-proof solution to get its hundreds of remote employees up and running rapidly, without compromising the security of clients’ applications.
After evaluating several solutions, eModeration discovered OneLogin. According to Paul: “The staff at OneLogin were extremely helpful and responsive, and we were able to conduct a trial right away. The solution accomplished everything we needed it to do.”
Key to eModeration choosing OneLogin was its ability to hide usernames and passwords for the underlying applications, so employees never actually see clients’ sign-on credentials. Instead, they use single sign-on to access applications through a proxy server hosted by eModeration, where security policies can be applied and managed.
“Our community managers and moderators cannot access any of the applications directly from unsecured networks. This model helps us eliminate risk and ensure that only authorized users are accessing our clients’ applications.”
Additionally, if any of the login information is ever compromised, eModeration can lock the person or application down immediately through OneLogin. “OneLogin’s security features go a long way in helping us establish trust with our clients.” said Paul.
Support and ease of use are two other features Paul appreciates. “Adding users and applications to OneLogin is blissfully simple, almost automatic now we have used OneLogin directory feature to integrate it to our Google Apps email.” he said. Additionally, Paul appreciated how supportive the team at OneLogin was in terms of creating and adding new features to better serve eModeration’s clientele. “OneLogin always works hard to accommodate our specific needs and requests.”
OneLogin eliminates the security risks of employees storing, sharing and changing passwords—a key selling point for Paul. “If we were issuing unique usernames and passwords for each employee every time we started up a large client project then our deadlines —and security —would be out the window.”
Many of the company’s projects begin immediately after the client signs the contract, so moderators must have immediate access. “With OneLogin, authorized community managers and moderators see a new button on their screens,” said Paul. “They just click the button and OneLogin signs them in automatically, removing the manual and insecure process of communicating new login credentials one by one to each of our employees.”
According to Paul, OneLogin makes compliance reporting easy and effective. Through centralized access control, valuable data can be accumulated and analyzed, providing tremendous insight about users and applications. The built-in audit trail records all important activity, including user updates, login attempts and application sign-ins.
“OneLogin’s reporting features helps us manage employees, track their activity and know what they’re able to access,” said Paul. “We can see what’s working and what’s not, and ensure all users are seeing and experiencing applications in the same way.”
Using IP-based security policies, OneLogin checks that all users are accessing our clients’ web applications from a secure IP address. Paul found that OneLogin made it easy to ensure access through only eModeration’s proxy IP address, and also enabled easy creations of exclusions to that rule, if necessary. Additionally, OneLogin helps to protect eModeration’s employees. “We keep logs of all of the sites visited—even rogue and unfavorable sites, some of which contain illicit content,” said Paul. “In the event of a legal investigation, we have proof that the employee accessed that content as part of his or her job.”
According to Paul, OneLogin has improved eModeration’s business responsiveness by allowing the company to scale up and down quickly. Fast provisioning and de-provisioning enables eModeration to react more quickly to clients’ needs. For example, if a client changes a password or tool without notice, the company can accommodate the change within hours and continue to be productive.
Adopting OneLogin has enabled eModeration to expand rapidly and attract new, larger customers who tend to have more complex security policies.
“Clients frequently have very stringent security requirements and come to us with a really tight deadlines,” said Paul. “We have needed, on occasion, to get several hundred people ready to moderate in many languages, every hour, worldwide. We also have to be able to identify the moderators uniquely, and guarantee they are accessing the services from secure locations.”
OneLogin makes it possible for Paul’s team to address these security challenges in time to meet their new client’s 2 week deadline. “We have been able to build six custom applications and import 300 employees in less than a week,” he said. “The OneLogin element was painless. It really was.”