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Open up to a global audience.


OpenAthens brings publishers into the world of single sign-on.

Every organization has many people who will benefit from the content you have created. They could be students, doctors, researchers or dedicated teams relying on the best tools available. You want to ensure your services are part of their research experience. OpenAthens enables new and existing customers seamless access to your services – simply, securely and with detail on all individuals.

Hear what our customers say

Key Features

Connect with federated identity software

Your platforms and applications will already have your own access management systems managing the usernames and password for each subscriber. You may open up for anonymous use with IP authentication. OpenAthens provides the software that brings your content and systems into the world of federated identity management. There are millions of individuals within thousands of organisations who will be able to access your services.

Engage an international community

The OpenAthens federation is the only international federation that allows commercial organisations to participate globally. This creates a diverse audience from academia, government, healthcare, engineering, pharmaceutical and other corporate markets. End-users who have a federated identity are able to come to your site and access their licensed information.  There are no national or academic regulations to prevent publishers joining OpenAthens.

Increase engagement

Once a user has started an OpenAthens session then all authentication happens in the background.  So after one sign-in people can move from article to article and resource to resource without having to enter their username and password again. The login screen is not required and users are able to read more resources across more sites. The end result is higher engagement and better decisions.

Enable personalisation for every user

Because every OpenAthens end user has their own unique identifier, they are able to come to each site and re-activate searches they have made on previous visits. Over time, dedicated researchers build up a portfolio of information and intelligence specific to their requirements. The anonymised ID and associated attributes provided by OpenAthens enables this personalised experience and creates a better experience for each user.

Benefits over IP authentication

Many organizations route all licensed traffic through a single IP address. IP addresses are often shared across organizations and prevent clarity on who is accessing which information within a licensed. OpenAthens creates a single sign on experience that is independent of any specific IP range. Each individual is given their own specific ID to log in with and can access services from anywhere.

Specialist support to simplify integration

Access management is integral to any paid-for application. As the demand for federated single sign grows and the commercial opportunity for publishers increases, OpenAthens provides a simple solution that handles the complexity of SAML and Shibboleth integration. Once our software is installed the management of authentication and authorisation is available to any product owner and our team of specialists are there to help with any future developments.

See OpenAthens in action

We regularly run open demo webinars for any publishers or services providers wishing to learn more about OpenAthens.

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Yes integrates with OpenAthens

FT uses OpenAthens so corporate and education customers can set up and manage single sign-on access to OpenAthens improves productivity by making authentication more efficient.

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How much does it cost for a publisher or service provider to use OpenAthens?

The annual subscription cost depends on the number of organisations accessing a publisher’s content via OpenAthens software and/or services. There is a one-off setup fee, which is payable only in the first year. We can provide a tailored quote based on your specific requirements.

What’s the difference between Shibboleth and OpenAthens?

Shibboleth is an extension of SAML which provides a single sign-on infrastructure and reference implementation. It is not a product and therefore no support service is available with the code. OpenAthens provides a suite of supported software and services which allow publishers and institutions to connect to each other via SAML/Shibboleth.

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