Oxford username, Single Sign-On password and Multi-factor authentication

IT Services also has information to help you on which credentials you require to login to a service, guidance about IT Services passwords, and how to manage and set up your Single Sign-On password.

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Your Oxford username is usually of the form abcd1234, where abcd is a code for your college or department. It is administered by IT Services and is separate from any other local college or departmental accounts you may have. 

Your Oxford username gives you access to many web-based services at Oxford.  See services using the Oxford username and Single Sign-On.

Your Oxford username and Single Sign-On password can be used to log in and this will start a Single Sign-On session.  Single Sign-On means that after your initial login, you can use associated services without having to re-enter your username and password.


Oxford Single Sign-On is the only login page where you should enter your Oxford username and Single Sign-On password. You can think of the Single Sign-On as a central authentication system that is trusted by various services in Oxford to handle all the username and password checking so that each individual service doesn't need to do it for itself. Once you have entered your Single Sign-On details you will need to enter your additional authentication credentials to proceed.  See Multi-factor authentication.

To end your Single Sign-On session ("logout") you will need to close your web browser (that includes quitting all running copies of your web browser).

Single Sign-On (SSO) now uses Multi-factor authentication (MFA) for added security.  This includes:

  • A new login page, with University of Oxford branding. On this page, the customer is expected to enter only their Oxford username and Single Sign-On credentials. This should be done in the format of abcd1234@OX.AC.UK Note that all letters after the @ symbol are capitalised.
  • A change to the Single Sign-On password length. Customers will be required when changing their password, to use a minimum of 16 characters. This change will take place on a rolling basis, with customers required to change their passwords upon expiry of their current password.
  • Second factor – A second step will be added which involves customers receiving a code (e.g. via a mobile, landline or text message) or generating a code using the mobile app (which can be used without mobile data or wifi), clicking approve and entering the code into the required field when prompted. Once the second factor is activated, the requirement to enter a code will depend on individual circumstances such as devices, settings and location, and so most users will rarely be prompted.  Single Sign-On customers will be changed over in alphabetical order of surname.  
  • Help and guidance is available for setting up Multi-factor authentication.

The Oxford username and Single Sign-On password is used to access the following, from IT Services:

There are also many services hosted outside IT Services that use Single Sign-On.  For example:

  • SOLO the Search Oxford Libraries Online service

See Login to a service for which credentials you require to access our popular services.

Whether your password has expired or you have forgotten it, our online facilities for managing your Single Sign-On/SSO account will allow you to change or reset the password to get it working again.

  • If you do not remember your current or expired password, then the password reset facility will allow you to set a new one.
  • If your password is due to expire or has expired and you still know what it is, you can use the change password facility to select a new one.
  • If you have forgotten your username and you are using Outlook on a PC you can look yourself up in the Address Book on Outlook. You need to right-click on your own entry and then choose "properties". Your username is shown as your alias in the information box that appears.
  • If you can't find your username as above or are having other difficulties with the above facilities, contact your local IT Staff or the IT Services Service Desk.

 

Note : If your University Card expires your Oxford username and Single Sign-On account will expire simultaneously. Your Oxford username account may also be expired on instruction from the Proctors or Registrar offices.

If you need to connect to the University network from another institution, from home or wirelessly you need the IT Services remote access service. Although the remote access account uses your Oxford Username it is not integrated with the Single Sign-On system and has a different password.

The remote access account provides access to the following services:

Current students, staff and official visitors may register for a remote access account via the IT Services self-registration pages and you will need to use your Oxford username to register and manage your remote access account.

To find out more see the remote access pages.

Most web browsers (including Chrome, Edge, Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari) work with Oxford's web services out-of-the-box.

The particular features your browser must support are:

Cookies - these are used to hold information about your SSO login status.
SSL Certificates - these are the digital equivalent of ID cards which help other people identify you, and help you identify other people, web sites, and organizations. Certificates are issued and administered by Certificate Authorities (CAs). Oxford uses certificates that have been signed by either QuoVadis or Trend Micro, both of which will automatically be accepted as a trusted CA by most modern browsers.
If you are security-conscious enough to use a custom security configuration then you may want to bear in mind the following points:

for javascript settings - you will need to trust scripting from nexus.ox.ac.uk
for cookie settings - you will need to accept cookies either automatically or when prompted. If you are very concerned about cookies you can delete them at the end of your browser session to avoid any ongoing tracking
for CA certificates - you will need to trust certificates issued by the Certificate Authorities that we use (QuoVadis or Trend Micro)

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