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New Phishing Campaign Leverages Google Drive
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jamieinmontreal
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jamieinmontreal,
User Rank: Strategist
8/3/2015 | 11:34:25 AM
Single Sign On Vs Password Synchronization
The old Maxim says "Necessity is the mother of invention", I would add that "convenience is the father".   This is another area where we see the "need" being over-ridden by the "convenience"; the need for password security on everything (legitimate) has been trumped by the convenience of not having to type a few extra characters when logging in.   SSO is a vault of passwords masked by an authentication method and some scripts / APIs to apps, nothing wrong with it until someone figures out how to get in to your vault and take the passwords.

So what's the difference between the vault and the synchronized password?  Surely only one password is more of a risk than several (even if they are all placed in a handy vault for the bad guy to get a hold of)?

First of all the level of complexity for that one password can be higher because now your user has only one password to remember.

Secondly remediation when the password is revealed or hacked is SO much easier with a synchronized password - you simply change one password to clean all systems connected to your Password Manager.   

Compare that with the SSO world where users have multiple passwords they then have to change inside the SSO setup in order to restore the security of their password access.

Finally - no matter what method you choose, stale access rights are the next thing on your agenda as you try and strengthen your defences - users won't tell you what they DON'T need, nor will application owners tell you who should no longer have access.   

Neccessity is the mother of invention, convenience is the father.
LanceCottrell
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LanceCottrell,
User Rank: Author
7/28/2015 | 5:42:14 PM
User training will never be enough
Great post, thanks! This attack shows once again that even sophisticated users will fall for phishing attacks. As security experts we need to give up on the idea that we can train our way out of this. While training is useful we need to create our tools under the assumption that user's will do nothing to contribute to their own protection.


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