UserLock vs. Okta

UserLock and Okta are two popular access security and access management solutions. Both platforms provide strong security features, such as multi-factor authentication (MFA), single sign-on (SSO), and contextual user access policies.

But choosing the right solution can be a challenge. Every organization is unique, and the key to getting identity and access management (IAM) right is selecting the provider that best fits your existing environment.

In this blog, you’ll find a comprehensive analysis of UserLock vs Okta. You’ll explore their features, advantages, and potential drawbacks, helping you decide which solution best fits your unique needs.

UserLock Overview

UserLock delivers an enterprise security solution that helps protect organizations from many common cybersecurity threats. Its robust access security features integrate seamlessly with on-premise and hybrid Active Directory (AD) environments, promoting secure user access to critical corporate networks.

With MFA, SSO, and session management capabilities, UserLock provides a smooth end-user experience for employees and peace of mind for IT teams. Admins can apply contextual access and granular MFA, providing frictionless protection for user accounts across different locations, devices, and security levels.

UserLock’s comprehensive security measures help maintain and monitor the protection of employee access to corporate networks. If you’re looking for an MFA solution to verify user access to an existing on-premise or hybrid AD environment, UserLock is your go-to to increase system security and meet compliance requirements.

OKTA Overview

Okta is a cloud-based identity and access management (IAM) solution that helps protect access to corporate networks. Okta’s IAM solutions provide secure, efficient, and user-friendly authentication. Okta’s core product can also offer additional MFA and SSO add-on solutions.

Okta users can manually integrate with on-premise AD environments by installing the Okta AD agent. Installing the agent and importing AD users and groups into Okta is required to enable this integration. IT teams can then delegate authentication and user provisioning, synchronizing their AD users and groups with Okta’s cloud-based user management system.

Overall, Okta is a full-featured, effective solution for cloud-based environments. Its massive range of integrations enables businesses to manage user authentication and access across multiple applications and services.

Benefits of UserLock

Installing UserLock can bring you many benefits:

  • Improve AD security with SSO and MFA: UserLock makes it simple to scale MFA across an organization by integrating with existing AD environments. UserLock leverages existing investments to extend AD security — not replace or overwrite it.
  • Integration with both on-premise and hybrid setups: UserLock enables MFA implementation across multiple platforms, and administrators can easily enable MFA on any AD membership computer or device.
  • Flexible access controls: With UserLock, you can define your own access policies based on any unique authentication and user logon requirements. Any authentication attempt that does not meet requirements is denied.
  • A range of security solutions: With UserLock, you can implement MFA, SSO, and session management solutions that help protect your key assets.
  • Real-time monitoring and risk detection: UserLock’s system visibility and real-time alerts immediately bring your attention to suspicious activity, letting you take swift and decisive action to protect your network.
  • Improved insights: With UserLock, you can record and audit all network logon events. With this information, you can create comprehensive reports and insights — helping you improve system security and reach compliance needs.

UserLock vs OKTA – Comparison

While UserLock and Okta can both help improve your security posture, they differ in several ways.

Feature UserLock Okta
Cloud, On-premise, or Hybrid? On-premise and Hybrid: UserLock simplifies the process of enabling MFA for AD logins on various connections, such as Windows login, RDP, RD Gateway, VPN, IIS, and cloud applications. Instead of replacing existing identity management solutions, UserLock builds on top of existing AD environments to improve access controls and system visibility. Cloud-based: Okta’s cloud-based service requires additional software to protect on-premise and legacy applications, using RADIUS to authenticate on-premise connections with cloud identities. There may be considerable manual installation and synchronization needed. UserLock can complement Okta’s offering by providing a solution for on-premise MFA — without requiring a connection to a cloud IP provider.
Minimum Users? No maximum or minimum number of users.

 

200-1000+. Okta’s minimum annual pricing level (currently $1,500) may be more than many organizations need to spend.
Two-Factor Authentication? Yes: UserLock enables MFA on Windows logon, RDP, and VPN connections to verify users’ identities and secure access to your network. UserLock supports various MFA methods, such as push notifications, authenticator applications, and programmable hardware tokens like YubiKey and Token2. You can also tailor UserLock to your system requirements. UserLock can make MFA deployment as smooth as possible, providing MFA to users without internet access, on all AD member devices, while detecting new endpoints automatically. Yes: Okta’s identity management solution allows admins to configure optional MFA at the organization or application level. The Okta MFA solution supports various MFA factors, including Okta Verify, Duo Security, and YubiKey.
Single Sign-On? Yes: UserLock SSO enables each user to log in once using their existing on-premise or hybrid AD credentials. They can then access popular external resources, such as Microsoft 365 and other cloud applications, without verifying their identities again. UserLock’s SAML protocol support enables you to configure connections to custom SaaS apps. Yes: You can add Okta’s SSO solution to let users access a network of over 7,000 pre-built integrations. If you’re looking to roll out SSO to a vast number of services, Okta enables you to deploy SSO systems to cloud apps efficiently.
Contextual Access Management? UserLock empowers you to enforce controlled user access policies that permit or deny user logins based on multiple criteria, such as login device, location, time, origin, or session type. The controls you set using UserLock’s contextual access management work with your organization’s policies to improve security and reduce user frustration. Okta’s MFA solution can provide contextual access management based on various criteria. You can assess factors such as login location, device, and origin to automatically allow or deny a login attempt.
Restrict by Machine & Device? Yes: With UserLock, you can control, restrict, and enforce user login locations by workstations or devices, IP ranges, departments, and countries. UserLock also extends beyond native Windows controls, giving you the power to set a central restriction for an entire group, if needed. Yes: Okta Device Trust for Windows enables you to block unknown Windows computers from accessing corporate SAML and WS-Fed cloud apps. In Okta’s Universal Directory, user and device identity can be linked, and a user’s known devices can be stored to block untrusted devices.
Restrict by Hours? Yes: UserLock allows you more control over the hours and days when protected users can log onto corporate networks. You can restrict AD user logon by working hours and/or a maximum session time. With these features, UserLock adds to Windows controls by enabling restriction of user logon hours by group, and enforcing logoffs when your chosen time restrictions expire. Only via maximum session length: With Okta, you can enforce a maximum session length which will log off users once they have surpassed the limit. However, you cannot define restricted or permitted login hours, as you can with UserLock.
Restrict by Session Type? Yes: UserLock can restrict AD logins by session type originating from a PC, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. This feature also offers protection for a remote workforce, limiting by session type from on-premise or remote login attempts. UserLock’s Wi-Fi session control feature also enables you to address some of the network threats associated with a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) workforce culture. Yes: Okta’s Global Session Policies enable administrators to manage access to the platform and govern user authentication based on many different session types. You can include additional challenges for specific sessions, and limit the duration of active sessions before re-authentication.
Limit Concurrent Logins & Initial Access Points? Yes: Limiting concurrent logins helps protect against credential misuse and is a crucial requirement for many compliance standards. With UserLock, you can prevent a user’s credentials from being used to log in more than once, preventing a potentially dangerous concurrent login scenario. You can also limit initial access points to a single point of entry, based on user, group, or organizational unit (OU). After connecting, any additional access attempts that are not initiated from this point are automatically blocked. No: In Okta, it is not currently possible to restrict the number of concurrent sessions for a user. The user can use the same account to log in to Okta and have several simultaneous sessions across various devices, as their initial verification was successful. The closest possible workaround is to set a rule requiring users to re-authenticate after a minimum session length, such as 60 minutes.
Monitoring, Alerts & Response? Yes: UserLock enables you to monitor, alert, and respond to all AD user account logon and logoff activity. You can choose to receive real-time alerts for any particular login behavior, with interaction and response managed remotely through the UserLock console. You can also notify end-users directly of any suspicious events that involve their credentials, letting you respond to unauthorized login attempts swiftly. Yes: Okta offers monitoring and alerting capabilities via its APIs, SDKs, and the Admin Console. Okta also supports integration with third-party commercial or custom monitoring tools for an organization that prefers to use external solutions.
Audit & Report on Logon Events? Yes: UserLock maintains records and generates reports for every user connection event and login attempt on an AD environment. You can audit and report all access events for your AD environment to improve security, monitor user behavior, or meet compliance needs. UserLock serves as a centralized platform for all access events, giving you the detailed insights you need. Yes: Okta’s System Log contains information about all tracked login and logoff events. You can view the logs through graphs, events tables, filters, and search functions to monitor various events within your organization.
Privileged User Auditing? Yes: Privileged users are high-value targets for hackers and pose significant risks to an organization’s security. UserLock allows you to monitor, audit, and archive modifications made by privileged users in a Windows application event log. You can also configure alerts to be triggered for any changes made to settings or policies. UserLock’s privileged user auditing capabilities help protect organizations against insider threats, while meeting best practice and compliance requirements. Yes: Okta provides a pre-built report that offers a snapshot of all admin roles currently in use. In addition to these reports, you can use the Okta System Log for privileged access management purposes, gaining an overview of Okta’s administrative functions and user permissions.
Web App? Yes: The UserLock Web App provides visual and intuitive tools to monitor session activity and react quickly to threats. With your enhanced access, you can monitor user activity and handle session management tasks even when working off-premises. The filtering and export functions also help automate reporting, saving you time and increasing visibility. Yes: Okta’s cloud-based software allows you to manage applications, settings, and permissions from anywhere. Okta connects to various user directories, such as AD and external SaaS solutions, to give a consolidated view of user information in one location. This simplifies the management of your user attributes, app permissions, and group assignments.

 

UserLock is the MFA and Access Management solution for you if…

UserLock provides MFA, SSO, and access management capabilities that may best fit the following use cases.

You want to boost security and meet compliance using your existing on-premise or hybrid AD environment

Do you want to improve system security without sacrificing your existing AD investment? Many access management solutions duplicate directories, requiring manual, lengthy, or sporadic synchronization with cloud-based software that replaces existing AD. Instead, by integrating with on-premise and hybrid AD infrastructure to extend its security posture, UserLock offers enterprise-grade access security that works with your AD environment – not against it.

You require more granular control to provide user-friendly security

One of the key challenges for modern IT departments is to balance system security with the user experience. If you introduce too few controls, you leave yourself open to attacks and costly data breaches. Too many checks, and you’ll see reduced productivity and a busy helpdesk. UserLock allows admins to introduce contextual access management — helping you increase protection without frustrating the end user.

You currently use on-premise or hybrid AD with external SaaS applications

Many organizations manage their employee access using an on-premise AD environment, with employees having access to external SaaS applications. Leaving employees to remember many passwords can lead to security threats like password sprawl and stolen credentials. If you currently use on-premise AD and external applications, UserLock SSO and MFA can provide secure access using one set of credentials. There’s no need to replace your existing user, access, and password management policies — UserLock adds to existing AD functionality to improve and streamline system security.

You use Microsoft 365 via AD/Microsoft Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) Domain Services

Installing UserLock SSO offers users easy access to the Microsoft 365 suite using their AD credentials. UserLock’s centralized controls also give you one central point to configure, view, and manage user access to your Microsoft 365 services.

UserLock customer testimonials

SYMTA Pièces

SYMTA Pièces, a French organization that produces adaptable parts for tractors and harvesters, required SSO and MFA to provide secure access to Office 365 using their existing on-premises Windows Active Directory credentials. SYMTA’s IT team also needed to secure VPN access and manage user activity from a single centralized console.

After a successful trial period, UserLock was identified as an ideal candidate. UserLock now offers SYMTA employees all the advantages of SSO, multiple MFA options, and granular contextual restrictions for IT teams to secure VPN access. This has resulted in improved overall security with an enhanced user experience.

“What interested me in UserLock was not necessarily MFA right away; it was really to secure and have an additional layer of security on top of our Active Directory.”

-Vincent Dousset, CIO at SYMTA Pièces.

Watch a demo of UserLock

Share this post :

François Amigorena

François Amigorena is the founder and CEO of IS Decisions, a global software company specializing in access management and MFA for Microsoft Windows and Active Directory environments. After a career spanning IBM and a subsidiary of la Société Générale, Francois became an entrepreneur in 1989 and has never looked back.

Secured By miniOrange