New Office 365 sign-in process

Starting Wednesday, January 30, ITS is making a few changes regarding how USC account holders will access their Microsoft Office 365 accounts. For most USC Office 365 accounts, you’ll access this via the USC NetID (“Shibboleth”) sign-in process -otherwise known as “single sign-on” – the process used to log into Workday, Blackboard, and many other applications.

See the detailed explanation of these changes from ITS below:

What Is Single Sign-On (SSO)?

In order to allow you to access multiple university-provided services without reentering your credentials, USC provides a single sign-on process (commonly referred to as the red NetID login screen).

Because USC’s SSO relies on a technical protocol referred to as Shibboleth, you may also hear this process referred to as Shibboleth single sign-on.

What Is the USC Microsoft Office 365 (O365) Account?

Your USC O365 account provides access to a number of applications, including email, calendar, Microsoft Office Online, Microsoft Office downloads, OneDrive for Business, Skype for Business, Teams, and other applications. While all USC account holders have a USC O365 account, some account holders may access these applications through their local school- or unit-based system.

  • If you access these applications with your credentials, SSO will apply.
  • If you access these applications through a school- or unit-based login, SSO may not apply.
  • If you use USC Gmail for your university email, SSO already applies.

Please note: At this time, students do not have access to the email and calendaring functions of USC O365 accounts.

How Will SSO Affect My Access to My USC O365 Account?

Most account holders access their USC O365 accounts through different devices (desktop, laptop, and mobile) and in a variety of ways—Web browsers, mobile apps, and Windows and Mac standalone clients and apps. While the impact of this change depends on the device and access method that you use, please note that most account holders will experience minimal inconvenience.

  • With the Outlook Web App (OWA), you will need to log in via SSO about once a day per device.
  • With mobile email apps, you will only need to log in via SSO once a year or when you change your password.
  • With the Outlook PC or Mac client, you will only need to log in via SSO twice a year or when you change your password.
  • With mobile and desktop versions of other Office 365 apps, such as OneDrive for Business and Microsoft Teams, you will only need to log in via SSO twice a year or when you change your password.

Does This Mean That I Need Duo to Access My USC O365 Account?

If you currently use Duo two-factor authentication (2FA) to access other USC NetID services, you will also be required to use Duo to access your USC O365 account through SSO.

If I Need Help with This, Where Do I Go?

If you have questions or concerns about accessing your USC O365 account through SSO, please contact the ITS Customer Support Center at 213-740-5555 or Support is available by phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Contact the editors