DOD taps FiXs for credentialing

The Defense Department has chosen a trusted identity network developed by the Federation for Identity and Cross-Credentialing Systems as the first enterprisewide solution for cross-credentialing between government and industry, according to an announcement from the group, which calls itself FiXs.

The systems allows for the verification and authentication of credentials between FiXs' member organizations and DOD Common Access Card holders. That means that a DOD employee or a contractor employee, using either a CAC or a FiXs-certified credential, can gain authorized access to multiple government and industry facilities.

FiXs of Fairfax, Va., is a coalition of government contractors, commercial companies and not-for-profit organizations. It has 23 member organizations.

The consortium built the FiXs network in 2005, and it became an authorized link to DOD's Cross-Credentialing Identification System infrastructure. Providing the first such trusted identity authentication network between DOD and industry, now operational worldwide, "represents a new era for federated identity strategies and clearly shows the commitment of industry and government to build more secure global identity management systems for physical applications," said Michael Mestrovich, president of FiXs.

"Trusted" as used to describe the network is not just an adjective, it's a technical term. FiXs and DOD spent more than two years developing a "trust model" that includes rules, policies and security guidelines the network must meet to earn the "trusted" label.

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

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