If there is one thing that concerns IT departments, it’s passwords — there’s a few others that rank high on the list, but we’ll let those fall by the wayside for the moment. Passwords were part of the order of business today when Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella took the stage for his first big event.
It may not be the glamorous Office for iPad, which has been generating the press, but for enterprise, Azure Active Directory is almost as important. It provides a single sign-on for business users that will work across platforms, not just with Microsoft’s own products – logging in to Box is the same as Office 365.
AD allows the user to reset a password, manage groups, utilize multi-factor authentication and set up portals (complete with company brand) using SaaS (software as a service) applications. “IT can protect data and resources on any cloud with synchronization to on-prem directories, machine based learning security reports, alerting and multi-factor authentication. Azure AD provides a rich standards-based platform that enables developers to deliver authentication and access control to their applications, based on centralized policy and rules”, says Microsoft’s Alex Simmons.
This will all be available next month for customers of the Microsoft Enterprise Agreement volume licensing program. The company promises more than 1,100 apps will be included.