About single sign-on

What is it?

Single sign-on (SSO) provides a secure method of accessing multiple web-based systems and applications without being required to log into each one.

How it works

Log into one supported University of Waterloo web-based system, and access other supported applications without having to enter your credentials again.

End a session

Simply close your browser (all browser windows) to end your single sign-on session. 

If you do not close the browser, your SSO session may still be active and may provide other users unapproved access to applications, even if they weren't the applications you were previously using. This is especially important if working on a public machine.

Initiating a single sign-on session

Logging into a supported application

All University of Waterloo employees and students will enter their username@uwaterloo.ca address and WatIAM password when logging into a SSO supported application.

SSO and two-factor authentication (2FA)

If you have opted in for two-factor authentication (2FA) or are required to use it as part of your role, you will receive a DUO 2FA authentication prompt when accessing supported systems, even though single sign-on is enabled.

Things to remember

  1. SSO is browser specific: If you open and begin working in a different browser, you will be prompted to begin a new SSO session. 

  2. Updated login pages: Login pages for single sign-on will look different than the login pages you may be used to seeing.

  3. SSO session lengths: The length of a SSO session will depend on the specific application, and may range from one to 24 hours.

Support tools and resources