What is an Identity Provider?

An identity provider is a system entity that creates, maintains, and manages identity information while providing authentication services to relying applications within a network. For example, A SAML identity provider is a system entity that issues authentication assertions in conjunction with a single sign-on (SSO) profile of the Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML).

To name a few benefits, identity providers:

  • Offer user authentication as a service
  • Employ single sign-on (SSO) capabilities, allowing easy access to other websites
  • Facilitate connections between cloud-computing resources and users, thereby decreasing the need to re-authenticate when using mobile and roaming applications
  • Save end users the need to repeatedly create and maintain new passwords

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