Increased security with Applicant Tracking Systems


In this article, we take a specific look at how a premium Applicant Tracking System provides you with additional safety blankets around your business-critical data…

The recent findings shared in the Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021 published on 24th March 2021 by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport make for unsettling reading. Survey results demonstrate that data “…continues to show that cyber security breaches are a serious threat to all types of businesses and charities. Among those identifying breaches or attacks, their frequency is undiminished…”

“Four in ten businesses (39%) and a quarter of charities (26%) report having cyber security breaches or attacks in the last 12 months. Like previous years, this is higher among medium businesses (65%), large businesses (64%) and high-income charities (51%).”

Data protection and security are intrinsic to businesses. They’re requisites in recruitment, too, given the kind of personal identification data you process daily.

The cause for concern increases as the Survey goes on to discuss a further threat that’s become more apparent over the past year or so, leaving businesses wider open to cyber attacks. “Moreover, under the pandemic, organisations are perhaps less aware of the breaches and attacks they are facing.”

“A key finding…is that direct monitoring has become more difficult in organisations where staff are working remotely – it is harder for organisations to know if staff is following the agreed policies and processes.”

“Upgrading hardware, software, and systems have also become more difficult. With staff working at home, there are more endpoints for organisations to keep track of. In this environment, we have seen falls in the proportions of businesses and charities taking more basic actions like updating their anti-malware across devices and setting up network firewalls. The qualitative research highlights the logistical issues that large organisations in particular face when trying to patch hardware and software remotely.”

The easing of lockdown restrictions is seeing swathes of the workforce heading back to their offices. But that doesn’t alleviate or lessen the mass acknowledgment that a more flexible approach to working from home is here to stay.

In this article, we take a specific look at how a premium Applicant Tracking System provides you with additional safety blankets around your business-critical data.

We cover:-

1. Signing-in with Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

2. Logging-in with Single Sign-On (SSO)

3. Six Reasons to Step Up to Security First Applicant Tracking System 

1. Signing-in with Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-Factor Authentication is a great way of helping protect your user accounts from being compromised. In doing so, it ensures that business-critical data doesn’t end up in the wrong hands.

Readily available on HireRoad’s Applicant Tracking System, it’s simple and user-friendly to set up. In addition, it’s configurable to suit your pre-agreed levels of authentication required across all users who access the system.

If you’re not immediately familiar with the term Multi-Factor Authentication you will be familiar with what Multi-Factor Authentication is. You’re almost certain to have used it on many occasions in your personal and professional life.

It requires users to enter pieces of information only they have and only they can obtain in order to log in to your system.

For example, in order to log in to your Applicant Tracking System, you will be required to enter your:-

  • Telephone number
  • Email Address
  • Authentication Code

Authentication codes are unique limited-time passcodes generated by authentication apps. Most of us are used to using them on an everyday basis, receiving authentication codes via:-

  • Bank security keys
  • SMS text messages
  • Emails

Your authentication app can be enabled or disabled to suit, allowing you to configure authentication as optional or mandatory per user. You can also pre-determine the regularity with which individual users are required to go through the authentication process when they login to the system.

It can also be configured to remember devices. You can set the duration for users to log in to the system on the same device unchallenged. This might be for anything up to six months of logging in without authentication, based on your internal compliance and security policies.

2. Logging in with Single Sign-On

 Single Sign-On shares the same security benefits with Multi-Factor Authentication. It’s just a different method of logging in to your Applicant Tracking System. 

Just like we described with Multi-Factor Authentication, you might be unfamiliar with the term Single Sign-On. But you will have encountered and used Single Sign-On multiple times in everyday life.

It refers to the option to log in with what’s known as an access and identity provider. For example, Microsoft and Facebook are very commonly used access and identity providers.

The HireRoad Applicant Tracking System currently includes a Microsoft log-in option for businesses that use Office 365, though other access and identity providers can be integrated upon request. 

Microsoft 365 includes an in-built system call Azure AD. This is a cloud-based service that manages identities and authentication for Microsoft 365 users.

For example, in order to log in to your Applicant Tracking System, you will be required to enter your:

  • Email address OR Access and identity provider, e.g. Microsoft. 

It’s highly advantageous to use Azure AD’s access and identity platform with your HireRoad Applicant Tracking System, enabling users to log in using the same account.

3. Six Good Reasons to Step Up to Security First Recruitment Software

It’s well worth thinking about upping your game in this area, with security first recruitment software that safeguards your data now and in the future.

With a superior Applicant Tracking System you can expect:

1. A higher level of security – The Multi-Factor Authentication and Single Sign-On log-in methods we’ve looked at are much safer than having just passwords. They provide extra protection for your users’ unique login credentials, e.g. telephone numbers and/or email addresses.

2. A reduced risk of successful cyber attacks – Hackers are less likely to break through the additional layers of security to get into your devices and your system.

3. Added protection for personal identification data – Should hackers manage to get into your devices they’ll struggle to penetrate your Applicant Tracking System where the personal identification data of multiple candidates, employees, and ex-employees is stored.

4. Safeguard against reputational damage – Adverse publicity surrounding data breaches can cause business loss due to a resulting lack of customer confidence. Prevention is better than cure, by ensuring your recruitment software is as safe first as it possibly can be.

5. Supported GDPR compliance – Enhanced security of the personal identification data of multiple candidates, employees, and ex-employees helps protect you against contravention of GDPR legislation if your recruitment software is hacked.

6. A removal of security weaknesses caused by remote working – All users can log in to your Applicant Tracking System confidently and securely from any device or location with Multi-Factor Authentication or Single Sign-On.

At HireRoad, a security-first approach to recruitment software is our governing principle. We welcome your questions about the security of your Applicant Tracking System and anything discussed in this article. 

If you’re considering transitioning to a market-leading Applicant Tracking System, we’d love to hear from you. Please click on the demo button below to take a look first hand at the multiple benefits your business or organisation could be enjoying soon.


Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021, Official Statistics, Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport