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RE: working on re-authentication

From: Alastair Campbell <acampbell@nomensa.com>
Date: Wed, 20 Dec 2017 14:07:36 +0000
To: Andrew Kirkpatrick <akirkpat@adobe.com>, lisa.seeman <lisa.seeman@zoho.com>, Michael Gower <michael.gower@ca.ibm.com>, "Rochford, John" <john.rochford@umassmed.edu>
CC: "W3c-Wai-Gl-Request@W3. Org" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <DB6PR0901MB09194EE38CDEC42719B05EDEB90C0@DB6PR0901MB0919.eurprd09.prod.outlook.com>
> Can people clarify what “re-authentication” is exactly and how it differs from authentication?

We should probably add a definition, but basically it means that you have authenticated on a site/page once, the site is maintaining some state (e.g. a cookie), but returning to the page requires a reduced form of authentication.
I think there are broadly three types of behavior, sites will either:

  *   Auto-re-authentication: Maintain your session (via cookies), and you don’t have to (re)authenticate at all (e.g. twitter).
  *   Re-authentication: Detect your previous authentication (via cookies) and then ask for a password, or perhaps the second factor again to confirm it is you at the keyboard (e.g. lastpass when set to remember your username but not password).
  *   Authentication: Make you to authenticate from fresh every time you arrive (e.g. my bank).
It is the second case that we’re trying to catch with re-authentication, the last case does not make any effort to maintain a previous session, and the first doesn’t require anything of the user.
Received on Wednesday, 20 December 2017 14:08:05 UTC

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