Gemplus has announced the FIPS 140-2 certification of its 64K smart card, making it eligible for purchase by the U.S. Department of Defense in a buy scheduled to take place later this year. The next generation Common Access Card (CAC) will feature double the memory of the previous CAC, and will be compliant with the U.S. Federal Government Smart Card Interoperability Specification Version 2.1 (GSC-IS 2.1).
Luxembourg, Horsham, PA, April 28, 2004 – Gemplus International S.A. (Euronext: LU0121706294 – GEM and NASDAQ: GEMP), the world’s leading provider of smart card solutions, today announces that it obtained FIPS 140-2 validation of its 64K smart card equipped with the applet required by the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) for the next phase of the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DoD) Common Access Card (CAC) program. Receiving the FIPS 140-2 validation on April 9, 2004, Gemplus becomes the first company validated to deliver smart cards that comply with the requirements for the next generation CAC.
The DMDC plans to begin purchasing Java™ technology-based 64K smart cards for the next generation CAC later this year and anticipates issuing the new cards in the beginning of 2005 to active duty military personnel, Selected Reserve, DoD civilian employees, eligible contractor personnel, and civilian employees of other Federal Agencies who require access to DoD networks to perform their duties. The next generation CAC has double the memory size of the 32K smart cards deployed in the first phase, in order to include additional digital certificates, functionality, and allow more applications and data to be stored on the cards. More significantly, it will comply with Version 2.1 of the Government Smart Card Interoperability Specification (GSC-IS 2.1). GSC-IS 2.1 has been designed to improve interoperability across the Federal government and agency boundaries and the adoption of GSC-IS 2.1 by the DMDC is a significant milestone.
The CAC is used for standard personnel identification and authentication, to authorized individuals, to secure networks, as well as to digitally sign and encrypt documents such as secure e-mail and travel requests.
“The DoD is an internationally recognized leader and innovator in technology and information security. The CAC program is clearly the largest U.S. government smart card initiative to date and sets the benchmark for other U.S. Federal agencies that are planning similar smart credentialing programs,” said Ernie Berger, President of Gemplus North America. “Gemplus sees considerable potential for the smart card’s use in the many ongoing or planned Federal and State government initiatives, which, upon completion, could potentially issue more than 28 million smart cards.”
The [K1] General Services Administration (GSA), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the Departments of State, Homeland Security, Interior, and Treasury will use smart cards for secure building and/or network access for employees and contractors. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) plans to issue smart cards to 15 million transportation workers to secure access to airports, seaports, railways, and other locations, as part of its Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) program. The Department of State plans to integrate smart chips into U.S. and Visa Waiver Program passports, while Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) is piloting smart cards for an Entry/Exit program.
In a recent visit to Gemplus’s Pennsylvania facility, U.S. Senator Arlen Specter, who sits on the Appropriations Department of Homeland Security subcommittee, called for smart card use to improve processes for border and information security in America:
“We live in a very uncertain world where we need to identify people. There has to be a better way to identify people and simplify the security process at airports, for example, so it isn’t unduly intrusive,” he said. “Gemplus has a real important product because security and convenience are the waves of the future and this technology is at the center of them.”
Gemplus’s FIPS 140-2 validated 64K Java technology-based smart card is part of Gemplus’s SafesITe solution for corporate security. The SafesITe system provides customers and system integrators with all the products (cards, readers, & software) and services necessary for easy deployment of multi-purpose employee cards.
Research and evaluate FIPS 201 Approved Products and get the latest info on compliant credentialing systems at FIPS201.com. Click to visit FIPS201.com.