Authentication Systems

Authentication Systems Overview

Authentication systems are security measures put in place to secure data and systems by requiring additional input beyond username and password for users to access a system. By providing this additional input, authentication systems help ensure that users are who they say they are. Authentication systems can require one other form of user input or more. These systems are sometimes called multiple-factor authentication, or MFA.

Using authentication improves data security and prevents potential breaches. When multi-factor authentication is required to access a system, the system is less vulnerable to security issues like weak passwords or attacks like phishing. Authentication systems are ideal for businesses with sensitive data or systems that require secure user accounts.

Top Rated Authentication Products

TrustRadius Top Rated for 2022

These products won a Top Rated award for having excellent customer satisfaction ratings. The list is based purely on reviews; there is no paid placement, and analyst opinions do not influence the rankings. Read more about the Top Rated criteria.

Category Videos

Which One is More Secure - Authy or Google Authenticator?
03:32
Depending on the level of security you require, the best authentication system for you could look very different. While Authy is a very convenient option with many sign-in options and features - Google Authenticator provides a more stripped-down authenticator.

Authentication Systems TrustMap

TrustMaps are two-dimensional charts that compare products based on trScore and research frequency by prospective buyers. Products must have 10 or more ratings to appear on this TrustMap.

Authentication Products

(1-25 of 119) Sorted by Most Reviews

The list of products below is based purely on reviews (sorted from most to least). There is no paid placement and analyst opinions do not influence their rankings. Here is our Promise to Buyers to ensure information on our site is reliable, useful, and worthy of your trust.

The Okta Identity Cloud

Okta is an enterprise grade identity management service, built in the cloud. IT can manage access across any application, person or device. Whether the people are employees, partners or customers or whether the applications are in the cloud, on premises or on a mobile device, Okta…

Key Features

  • ID Management Single-Sign On (SSO) (121)
    91%
    9.1
  • Multi-Factor Authentication (112)
    90%
    9.0
  • ID-Management Access Control (116)
    88%
    8.8
WatchGuard AuthPoint
Customer Verified
Top Rated
TRUE

WatchGuard AuthPoint is a multi-factor authentication (MFA) service that helps companies keep their assets, information, and user identities secure. Multi-factor authentication solutions can enable organizations to close security gaps that leave companies vulnerable to breaches by…

LastPass for Business

LastPass, a GoTo (formerly LogMeIn) company, is a password management application to simplify access to enterprise applications for users but also increase centrality and ease of management of access for administrators with task automation, convenient and secure password sharing,…

Key Features

  • Password Management (89)
    95%
    9.5
  • ID-Management Access Control (68)
    87%
    8.7
  • Account Provisioning and De-provisioning (62)
    79%
    7.9
Cisco Secure Access by Duo

Cisco Secure Access, by Duo is a two-factor authentication system (2FA), acquired by Cisco in October 2018. It provides single sign-on (SSO) and endpoint visibility, as well as access controls and policy controlled adaptive authentication.

HID DigitalPersona (formerly Crossmatch)

HID DigitalPersona (formerly Crossmatch) provides a comprehensive multi-factor authentication solution. The vendor’s value proposition is that their solution frees users from cumbersome login activities while making it easy for an IT Team to secure access to their networks, data…

Google Authenticator
Customer Verified
Top Rated

Google Authenticator is a mobile authentication app.

Microsoft Azure Active Directory

Microsoft Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) is a cloud-based identity and access management (IAM) solution supporting restricted access to applications with Azure Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) built-in, single sign-on (SSO), B2B collaboration controls, self-service password, and…

Key Features

  • ID Management Single-Sign On (SSO) (45)
    94%
    9.4
  • ID-Management Access Control (45)
    91%
    9.1
  • Multi-Factor Authentication (44)
    90%
    9.0
CyberArk Workforce Identity (formerly Idaptive Next-Gen Access)

Cyberark Workforce Identity (formerly Idaptive Next-Gen Access Services, acquired by CyberArk in 2020) secures enterprise identities against cyberthreats that target today’s hybrid IT environment of cloud, mobile and on-premises. Cyberark Workforce Identity helps protect against…

Firebase
Customer Verified
Top Rated

Google offers the Firebase suite of application development tools, available free or at cost for higher degree of usages, priced flexibly accorded to features needed. The suite includes A/B testing and Crashlytics, Cloud Messaging (FCM) and in-app messaging, cloud storage and NoSQL…

SecurID

SecurID, a company and solution suite from RSA, is an identity and access management suite supporting access management, authentication, and identity governance.

Key Features

  • Multi-Factor Authentication (5)
    90%
    9.0
IBM Cloud App ID

IBM Cloud App ID helps developers who are not security experts to easily add authentication to their apps, and protect their APIs and app back-ends running on IBM Cloud. Developers can add a variety of login-in types: Email or username and passwordEnterpriseSocial App ID includes…

Key Features

  • Password Management (17)
    87%
    8.7
  • ID Management Single-Sign On (SSO) (17)
    86%
    8.6
  • ID-Management Access Control (17)
    77%
    7.7
Amazon Cognito

Amazon Cognito is a mobile identity product that allows users to add user sign-up and sign-in to mobile and web apps, and authenticate users through social identity providers.

SolarWinds Access Rights Manager (ARM)

SolarWinds Access Rights Manager (ARM) is designed to assist IT and security admins to quickly and easily provision, deprovision, manage and audit user access rights to systems, data, and files. By analyzing user authorizations and access permission you get visualization of who has…

Symantec VIP

Symantec Validation and ID Protection Service (VIP) is presented as a user-friendly, cloud-based strong authentication service that enables enterprises to secure access to networks and applications without impacting productivity. Also included with VIP Enterprise two-factor authentication…

Yubico

Swedish company Yubico offers multi-factor authentication.

PingOne Cloud Platform

The PingOne Cloud Platform from Ping Identity in Denver, Colorado is an identity management and access solution (IAM) for enterprises. Features of the products include single sign-on, multi-factor authentication, user management with directory, provisioning and deprovisioning. The…

Key Features

  • ID Management Single-Sign On (SSO) (7)
    88%
    8.8
  • Multi-Factor Authentication (7)
    86%
    8.6
  • ID-Management Access Control (5)
    83%
    8.3
Twilio Authy

Authy is a 2FA application acquired by Twilio in 2015. Authy provides strong authentication for the connected world, protecting people and the enterprise against malicious attacks. Its two-factor authentication (2FA) security solution aims to enable organizations to minimize risk…

One Identity Defender

One Identity, formerly Dell Software, offers Defender, a multi-factor authentication system.

FortiAuthenticator

Fortinet offers FortiAuthenticator, an identity and authentication product available as an appliance or virtual machine to identify network users and enforce identity-driven policy across an enterprise network. FortiAuthenticator supports 2FA and single sign-on (SSO).

Jumio

Jumio in Palo Alto aims to protect businesses through online identity verification and authentication services that quickly and accurately connect a person’s online and real-world identities. Jumio’s end-to-end identity verification solutions are used to fight fraud, maintain compliance…

OneSpan Cloud Authentication

OneSpan Cloud Authentication increases operational efficiency by streamlining the authentication process. The solution is designed to provide all the benefits of the cloud and support banks and other businesses’ transformation from costly legacy, on-prem infrastructures to a more…

Workspace ONE Access (formerly VMware Identity Manager)

Workspace ONE Access, (formerly VMware Identity Manager), provides multi-factor authentication, conditional access and single sign-on to SaaS, web and native mobile apps.

Azure Multi-Factor Authentication (Discontinued)

Microsoft's Azure Multi-Factor Authentication is the recently rebranded technology acquired with PhoneFactor in 2012. From 2018 it is no longer available as a standalone product.

Plaid

Plaid in San Francisco offers a suite of applications supporting banks with risk management and customer account management features. Plaid is used by digital financial apps and services like Betterment, Expensify, Microsoft and Venmo, and by banks to make it easier for consumers…

StealthINTERCEPT

StealthINTERCEPT, an evolution of STEALTHBITS Enterprise Password Enforcer supporting high security password creation, the ability to detect and prevent the creation of previously exploited passwords, rejection of user log in credentials, and other password policy enforcement features.…

Learn More About Authentication Systems

What are Authentication Systems?

Authentication systems are security measures put in place to secure data and systems by requiring additional input beyond username and password for users to access a system. By providing this additional input, authentication systems help ensure that users are who they say they are. Authentication systems can require one other form of user input or more. These systems are sometimes called multiple-factor authentication, or MFA.

Using authentication improves data security and prevents potential breaches. When multi-factor authentication is required to access a system, the system is less vulnerable to security issues like weak passwords or attacks like phishing. Authentication systems are ideal for businesses with sensitive data or systems that require secure user accounts.

Authentication System Features & Capabilities

Authentication Systems have different ways of authenticating users, but they all share a few key features.

  • Enable multiple-factor authentication
  • Secure systems against password theft or data loss
  • Offline authentication
  • Secure single sign-on
  • User management

Multi-Factor Authentication Solution Methods

Most modern authentication systems offer a wider range of authentication methods than passwords alone. The most common approach for advanced authentication, such as two-factor authentication or multi-factor authentication, is to pair a password with some sort of external verification. Other common authentication methods include:

  • Challenge questions
  • Unique identifying items, such as physical devices or external applications
  • Biometric identifies, such as retina and fingerprint scans or facial recognition
  • Location-based authentication

Authentication System Comparison

When comparing different authentication systems, consider these factors:

  1. Authentication methods: What authentication methods do each system offer? Some authentication products focus on password creation and management, while others provide external applications for MFA. Others offer physical devices, such as keycards or retinal scanners. Buyers should consider which authentication methods are most appropriate for their business.
  2. Active vs. passive authentication: Some vendors have been more proactive in adopting responsive authentication capabilities, such as behavioral analysis or location-based authentication. These capabilities provide additional visibility into possible security breaches and suspicious authentication attempts, allowing for more rapid and effective responses. However, smaller or more geographically-distributed organizations may not be able to make as effective use of these extended capabilities.
  3. End-user experience: Each authentication method bears a unique user experience and is more or less accessible than others. For instance, biometric authentication like fingerprints may not be viable or appropriate in certain environments. Other methods require end users to have personal devices, which may not be true for all users. Buyers should consider what the end user base will look like, and what implications that has on which methods to use.

Pricing Information

Pricing for authentication systems depends on the kind of authentication needed. App-based and SMS authentication services tend to be cheaper than biometric authentication or authentication that requires a physical passkey. Many authentication systems offer a free option for a small number of users. Beyond that, authentication systems can start as low as $1.00 per user per month. More fully-featured authentication systems can reach $10.00 per user per month or more.

Authentication Systems Best Of Awards

The following Authentication Systems offer award-winning customer relationships, feature sets, and value for price. Learn more about our Best Of Awards methodology here.

Best Authentication System Products

Related Categories

Frequently Asked Questions

What is two-factor authentication?

Two-factor authentication uses more than one authentication test, usually a password paired with another authentication method.

How is authentication done in computers?

Traditionally, digital authentication was via a password. In recent decades, multi-factor authentication has added other checks, such as key cards or one-time passwords from external devices, for additional security.

What is the difference between two-factor authentication and multi-factor authentication?

Two-factor authentication only uses 2 authentication checks, usually a password and another method. MFA uses 2 or more authentication methods, with each additional method designed to increase security.

What are the three types of authentication?

The three types of authentication are something that you know (a password, or challenge questions), something you have (like a key card, device, or external application), and something that you are (such as retina scans, fingerprints, or other biometric information).

How much does authentication software cost?

Costs vary depending on the scale and types of authentication being purchased. They can start as low as $1/user/month, up to $10/user/month, or more if authentication hardware like retinal scanners are required as well.