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Microsoft Previews Azure Active Directory Password Rollover Feature for Social Media Accounts

Microsoft's Azure Active Directory team released a "preview" this week of an automatic password rollover feature for organizations that use shared social media accounts.

The feature, which is designed to work with services such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, will permit single sign-on access by end users to an organization's social media account. Once the feature is enabled, it will automatically generate "strong" passwords that these end-users don't have to remember. A 16-character password gets randomly generated by the Azure AD service at each rollover time and it gets changed by the service automatically.

The aim of the new feature is to enhance security by avoiding situations where an organization's social media account could get compromised or breached, according to Microsoft's announcement. The feature is still at the preview stage, so Microsoft only recommends using it with test accounts for now.

Once the automatic password rollover feature has been set up, end users will be required to access the organization's shared social media account in one of three ways. They can use the "Azure AD Access Panel, My Apps mobile apps, or Azure AD single sign-on links," Microsoft's announcement explained.

In order for the feature to take effect, IT pros have to set it up first. That's done using the Azure management portal, as described in Microsoft's announcement. IT pros can assign individual users or groups of users when setting it up.

The automatic password rollover feature was one of Microsoft's "biggest requests" for improving Azure AD's support for managing social media applications, according to Alex Simons, director of program management for the Microsoft Identity and Security Division, in the announcement.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.

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