password synchronization

Password synchronization is an authentication process that coordinates user passwords across various computers and computing devices so a user only has to remember a single password instead of multiple passwords for different machines or devices.

Password synchronization is an authentication process that coordinates user passwords across various computers and computing devices so a user only has to remember a single password instead of multiple passwords for different machines or devices. Some versions of password synchronization, such as single sign-on, also enable password coordination across applications.

Password synchronization typically increases security by insisting on the use of strong passwords that cannot be easily guessed. Password synchronization also reduces the number of password-related requests for help, which are reported as being the single biggest demand on help desk resources. There are a number of password synchronization products available, including MTech's P-Synch, Proginet's SecurPass, and Systor's SAM Password Synchronization.

Password synchronization is among a number of identity management processes that have been developed to deal with password chaos, a too-common situation in which users have multiple identities and passwords across a variety of networks, Web sites, applications, computers and/or computing devices. According to a ZDNet article, password chaos is one of the main threats to the development of e-commerce.

This was first published in July 2006

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