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What can you do with SURFconext?

SURFconext offers 'Single Sign On'-access to a large number of online services. Almost 120 Dutch organisations in the area of secondary vocational-, higher education and research are already using these. Amongst the most used services are: Google Apps for Education, SURFspot, Legal Intelligence and several library services.

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Identity Providers

An Identity Provider is an organization which provides information about the identity of a user that makes authentication of a user possible. Examples of Identity Providers are Universities and research institutions. These organizations deliver the identities for their students and employees.
Documentation for Identity Providers
(Dutch)

                

Service Providers

A Service Provider (SP) is an organization which delivers content and services that are available via the internet. For example: Web shops, video services and publishers but also educational institutions which offer online courses for students from other institutions. Examples are SURFspot, Google Apps for Education and Edugroepen.

Documentation for Service Providers (English)

What advantages does SURFconext offer for my organisation?

The group of almost 120 organisations (connected IdP's) in The Netherlands who use SURFconext, consists of universities, university hospitals and tertiary medical teaching hospitals, universities of applied sciences, research institutions and senior secondary vocational education institutions. Together they represent a group of 1.5 million users. These users generate almost 2 million logins per month, using more than 100 different cloud services.

SURFconext allows users to have access to services offered by multiple Service Providers using only 1 account. Besides, SURFconext facilitates online collaboration in the cloud, both between users within the same organisation as between users from different organisations.

For IdP's

If you connect your organisation to SURFconext, you will enjoy the following advantages:

  • By connecting to SURFconext only once, your users will have access to all available services.
  • You don't have to implement and maintain a custom made connection to each service or Service Provider seperately.
  • You can regulate authorisation for entire groups of students and employees easily.
  • The number of available services is ever growing, since more and more organisations choose to use SURFconext.
  • You can integrate your internal authorization resources with SURFconext.
  • SURFconext offers more flexible and cheaper licences.
  • Easy integration of services thanks to open standards

For SP's

  • Connecting once to the platform makes your service available to all connected institutions (connected IdP's).
  • Fast and easy access for more than 1 million users.
  • Certainty about identity of users.
  • Less user administration.
  • A single point of contact with one connection.
  • A long-time trusted partner of education and research institutions.
  • Double security through SURFsecureID.
  • A single link provides strong authentication for all institutions. As an extra advantage, authentication tools are issued by the institutions locally.

For end users

  • Simple, secure access to cloud services with the institution's account, i.e. no need for separate user accounts for individual services (single sign-on)
  • Protection of privacy in the sense that the minimum amount of personal data is disclosed to the service provider
  • It is always clear with which services the user's data is being shared
  • Access to services from the international education and research community

Why should I connect to SURFconext?

See the above mentioned advantages. The number of available cloud services is growing quickly. Most organisations consider to use these services combined with internally hosted services. Besides, organisations want to offer a secure environment where both internal and external services can be used side by side. Important elements for this are Single Sign-On, trusted identity and collaboration in groups and teams. Organisations are looking for possibilities to integrate these different kinds of applications. SURFconext offers starting points to realise this.

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