GSA to roll out smart cards in 2004

The General Services Administration has hired BearingPoint Inc. of McLean, Va., to provide 14,000 smart cards to agency employees by the beginning of next year.

GSA awarded the $1.35 million contract through the Smart Access Common ID indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract.

BearingPoint also will provide entrance readers and visitor identification validation systems at selected facilities across the country.

GSA said the contract eventually will expand to include ID cards for all GSA contractors.

Employees will use the cards to access their building. GSA said the cards, which meet governmentwide interoperability standards, will contain identifying information about the employee, such as a personal ID number and biometric fingerprint data, on a microchip, and include anticounterfeit protection, such as holographs and microprinting.

"I am certain [that] by upgrading our access systems, we will improve the security environment not only for the federal community, but also for visitors to our facilities every day," GSA administrator Stephen Perry said.

GSA and the Homeland Security Department collaborated to develop the new GSA card.

Jason Miller writes for Government Computer News

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