The Sunderland City Council in England has implemented a regional ID initiative that will allow its citizens to access both public and private sector services. Assisted by California-based ActivIdentity, the new infrastructure that started as a pilot in 2003 already supports smart cards for college students and businesses.
Local Authority Pilots Smartcard Scheme for Public and Private Enterprises
FREMONT, Calif., and LONDON–Sunderland City Council has successfully implemented phase one of a regional federated identity initiative for the North East of England, enabling citizens to gain access to shared services provided by the public and private sector. Sunderland City Council has designed, developed and deployed the Trusted Services Infrastructure (TSI) for the North East Connects Partnership (NECP) and is supported by ActivIdentity , a global leader in digital identity assurance. The infrastructure is already being successfully used to support the use of smartcards by college and university students as well as local businesses. Other organizations are now being invited to exploit it for their own identity projects.
Development of the TSI is led by Conn Crawford, a Strategic Projects Officer with Sunderland City Council, who will be presenting on the use of federated systems and an infrastructural approach to shared services with local government at Infosecurity Europe 2006.
“The infrastructure is a prototype capability designed to support the Government’s drive toward shared services and since our definition of this embraces all sectors we are now promoting it to public and private sector organizations throughout the North East of England to encourage their use of the system,” Crawford explains.
The pilot began in 2003/4 with a project to support a local college, which included the provisioning of local login, building access and network login for some 400 users. In September 2005, NECP deployed 8,500 smartcards for National Union of Students members at the University of Sunderland which held membership details, discount privileges and digital certificates to authenticate online services. NECP is continuing to develop working relationships with other private and public sector organisations, notably software company SAGE, for whom the partnership has already supplied access control smartcards for systems at the company’s global HQ in Newcastle Upon Tyne.
“The ActivIdentity technology has given us a useful prototype capacity to manage up to 80,000 smartcard holders and we are now encouraging organisations in the region to come up with innovative ways in which to exploit its functionality. For example, using a federated identity management infrastructure allows third party payment and e-ticketing services to be accessed by organisations planning a facilities smartcard to control employee access.
‘Federation’ protects the company’s assets, including confidential employee information, while the use of third party services can enhance the whole cardholder proposition, making the business case much more sustainable,” concludes Crawford.
Conn Crawford’s presentation, ‘Smarter with Identity,’ takes place in the Business Seminar Theatre from 16:00 to 16:25 on April 25 at Infosecurity Europe 2006.
ActivIdentity Card Management System (CMS) merges the issuance, support and administration of authentication devices, digital credentials and the associated user data into a single, intuitive Web-based management interface. The Web-based architecture enables geographically-dispersed locations to easily and securely provide the same issuance, management and maintenance functions to appropriate people across the entire organization.
The NE Connects is an e-government partnership established to examine electronic government initiatives in the North East, how they impact on services and on the people of the region. All 25 north east local authorities are members of the partnership representing 2.7 millions citizens. The partnership will seek to mainstream and develop the pioneering work of the North East Regional Smartcard Consortium (NERSC) which laid the initial foundation of the Trust Services Infrastructure. For more information contact Andrew Death on (0191) 261 3903.
ActivIdentity is the trusted enabler of digital identity assurance for governments, enterprises and identity management partners. Formed from the union of ActivCard and Protocom – leaders in the areas of authentication, credential management and enterprise single sign-on –
ActivIdentity provides the only complete platform for the secure issuance, management and use of digital identities. The platform consists of strong authentication, enterprise single sign-on and enterprise access card solutions. Today more than 20 million users at corporations, government agencies and financial institutions use the Company’s solutions to safely and efficiently interact electronically. Headquartered in Fremont, Calif., the Company has development centers in the US, Australia, and France, and sales and service centers worldwide. For more information, visit www.actividentity.com.