The Liberty Alliance consortium has announced the formation of new relationships with six global alliances, and the addition of Intel Corporation to the Liberty Alliance Management Board. The new partner relationships will help Liberty address identity challenges in the security, financial, and mobile services sectors.
Liberty is developing an open federated identity standard and business tools and guidance for implementing identity-based services. "Federated identity offers businesses, governments, employees and consumers a more convenient and secure way to control identity information in today's digital economy, and is a key component in driving the use of e-commerce, personalized data services, as well as web-based services."
Standards organizations now working collaboratively with the Liberty Alliance include Network Applications Consortium (NAC), Open Mobile Alliance (OMA), Open Security Exchange (OSE), PayCircle, SIMalliance, and WLAN Smart Card Consortium. The forging of new global alliances by Liberty highlights the importance of federated identity as "a key enabler in everything from mobile payments and on-demand networking to integrating electronic and physical security systems."
The Alliance also announced that Intel Corporation has joined the global consortium as "both a sponsor member and participating company on the Alliance's Management Board. As the newest member on the Management Board, Intel is one of fifteen (15) companies responsible for overall governance and operations of the Liberty Alliance. This new membership status will allow Intel the opportunity to work with the Liberty Alliance membership to assist in the creation and recommendation of future specifications and business tools in the area of federated identity."
About Liberty's Six New Global Alliances
The Liberty Alliance, the consortium developing an open federated identity standard and business tools and guidance for implementing identity-based services, today announced new relationships with six global alliances. Network Applications Consortium (NAC), Open Mobile Alliance (OMA), Open Security Exchange (OSE), PayCircle, SIMalliance and WLAN Smart Card consortium are working collaboratively with the Liberty Alliance...
"Identity is not an add-on," said Michael Barrett, vice president of privacy and security at American Express and president of the Liberty Alliance. "Many of today's IT limitations exist because identity wasn't adequately built into the foundation of our networks and no one wants to make that mistake in the future. The growing adoption of Liberty's standard clearly demonstrates that federated identity is a top priority across multiple industries."
In the mobile and financial arena, PayCircle (www.paycircle.org) is working with Liberty to combine federated identity and mobile payment expertise to promote new successful business models that generate revenue for service providers and better protect users. PayCircle, which has signed a liaison agreement with the Liberty Alliance, is a consortium defining open, standardized and secure APIs for mobile payments regardless of the payment system.
"The collaboration and cooperation of Liberty Alliance and PayCircle will help guide developers into the Mobile Web Service future," said Hans Wolf, president of PayCircle. "As part of our relationship, PayCircle will provide an integrated Payment Reference implementation using Liberty Alliance state of the art identity management technology."
OMA (www.openmobilealliance.org), the WLAN Smart Card consortium (www.wlansmartcard.org), and the SIMalliance (www.simalliance.org) have also established liaison agreements with Liberty to further expand federated identity's use in the mobile ecosystem. OMA is a global organization delivering specifications for all types of interoperable mobile service enablers, while the SIMalliance and WLAN Smart Card consortium are specifically addressing security challenges in the mobile space.
The WLAN Smart Card consortium focuses on secure mobility management by defining and promoting specifications for worldwide access to wireless LAN networks. "Roaming in security and privacy is a major challenge hampering wireless Internet growth," said Bertrand du Castel, President of the WLAN Smart Card consortium. "The Liberty Alliance framework coupled with smart card authentication provides a roaming environment fostering take-up of WLAN technology by corporations and major institutions in a significant way."
On the other hand, the SIMalliance is addressing the Security Identification Module (SIM) card's role in energizing the next generation of mobile services. "For many of our members, Liberty's work is a continuation of the European Commission projects we did to position the SIM in open environments," said Philippe Vallee, Chairman of the Board of SIMalliance. "The SIMalliance is pleased to support the SIM's extended role in the overall Liberty Alliance identity framework."
In October 2003, Radicchio, a cross-industry initiative for secure m-commerce, chose to contribute all its existing work in the area of mobile data services to the Liberty Alliance for further development. This included its "Trusted Transaction Roaming" platform — t2r — developed with the support of partners like the European Commission and ETSI.
Identity is a foundational element of any relationship — both in the physical and virtual world. As identities become inextricably linked to personal attributes, roles, permissions and processes, relationships and the security to protect those relationships will become more complex.
The Open Security Exchange (www.opensecurityexchange.org) is a program of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organization (ISTO). Formed in 2003, the global consortium is creating standards aimed at integrating the management of physical and cyber security, delivering best practice guidelines that enable organizations to more efficiently mitigate risk, optimize their security postures and enforce privacy policies. The OSE is composed of leaders in the fields of physical and cyber security management, and its mission is to promote the use of standards for interoperability between physical and cyber security systems, and educate organizations about security management.
OSE (www.opensecurityexchange.org) is an organization tackling the complex challenges of bridging physical and IT security systems, of which federated identity plays a large role. OSE is delivering interoperable security specifications and best practice guidelines that enable organizations to more efficiently mitigate risk, optimize their security postures and enforce privacy policies.
"Strong identity management is a key component of good security management," said Eric Maurice, Chairman and Executive Director of the Open Security Exchange. "OSE hopes to help extend Liberty's vision for federated identity to the physical security infrastructure of end users. In the end, customers will benefit from our collaboration."
The Network Applications Consortium (www.netapps.org) is another organization exploring federated identity's impact on business-critical applications. NAC, a new affiliate member of the Liberty Alliance, is dedicated to improving interoperability and manageability in heterogeneous, virtual-enterprise computing environments. NAC membership represents combined revenues of over $750 billion, more than 50,000 network servers, and more than 1 million workstations.
"Liberty Alliance and NAC share the similar goal of promoting ongoing collaboration and knowledge sharing among end-users, vendors and industry thought leaders," said Fred Wettling, chairman of the Network Applications Consortium and infrastructure architecture manager at Bechtel. "NAC members understand what is needed to manage complex global IT infrastructures, and standards based identity management is a critical element. We are happy to combine our influence and knowledge with Liberty's diligent focus on federated identity." [from the text of the announcement]
About the Liberty Alliance Management Board
The Liberty Alliance Management Board is responsible for the overall governance of the Alliance and has the final voting authority for specifications. With the addition of Intel Corporation, the Management Board is now [2004-03] represented by fifteen (15) companies. They are: American Express, AOL Time Warner, Ericsson, France Telecom, General Motors, Hewlett-Packard Company, Intel, Nokia, Novell, NTT DoCoMo, Sony Corporation, Sun Microsystems, and Verisign, Vodafone. See the Liberty membership list for Sponsor, Associate, and Affiliate Members.
From the Intel announcement:
The Liberty Alliance Project today announced that Intel Corporation has joined the global consortium developing an open federated identity standard and business tools for implementing identity-based services, as both a sponsor member and participating company on the Alliance's Management Board. As a Liberty Alliance member, Intel will continue its efforts towards the evolution of additional devices that can take advantage of Liberty Alliance compliant infrastructure and services.
Liberty's federated approach to identity management provides a standards-based foundation for identity networks and services. By identity-enabling systems and services, companies can increase security, create new efficiencies to cut internal IT costs, enable new business opportunities and make Web services more privacy friendly.
Identities play a large role in the convergence between computing and communications, which is an evolution Intel has been driving for many years. Intel has worked hard to advance basic building blocks both at the silicon level as well as at the platform hardware/software level. Joining Liberty Alliance will help Intel continue to advance the development of identity standards that will become one of the basic building blocks for emerging computing and communications usage models.
"Authentication and identity management are critical to the success of new computer and communications usages," said Colin Evans, Director System Software, Corporate Technology Group, Intel. "Liberty Alliance brings together an exciting array of companies from many industries to define these standards and we are looking forward to working with our customers and member companies to make implementation a reality across all the hardware platforms we provide."
In addition, as the newest member on the Management Board, Intel is one of 15 companies responsible for overall governance and operations of the Liberty Alliance. This new membership status will allow Intel the opportunity to work with the Liberty Alliance membership to assist in the creation and recommendation of future specifications and business tools in the area of federated identity.
About the Liberty Alliance Project
"The Liberty Alliance Project is an alliance of more than 150 companies, non-profit and government organizations from around the globe. The consortium is committed to developing an open standard for federated network identity that supports all current and emerging network devices. Its goal is to create open, technical specifications that (i) enable simplified sign-on through federated network identification using current and emerging network access devices, and (ii) support and promote permission-based attribute sharing to enable a user's choice and control over the use and disclosure of his/her personal identification.Federated identity offers businesses, governments, employees and consumers a more convenient and secure way to control identity information in today's digital economy, and is a key component in driving the use of e-commerce, personalized data services, as well as web-based services. Membership is open to all commercial and non-commercial organizations.
Federated Identity allows users to link identity information between accounts without centrally storing personal information. Also, the user can control when and how their accounts and attributes are linked and shared between domains and Service Providers, allowing for greater control over their personal data. In practice, this means that users can be authenticated by one company or website and be recognized and delivered personalized content and services in other locations without having to re-authenticate or sign on with a separate username and password.
Network identity refers to the global set of attributes that are contained in an individual's various accounts with different service providers. These attributes include such information as name, phone numbers, social security numbers, addresses, credit records and payment information. For individuals, network identity is the sum of their financial, medical and personal data-which must be carefully protected. For businesses, network identity management creates the ability to have greater knowledge of their customers and constituents and to interact with them in ways that bring greater value to both parties.
Simplified sign-on enables users to be authenticated within one domain and have their identity recognized by other domains or websites without having to maintain myriad user name / password combinations. Inside an enterprise, this would allow an employee to have access to hosted resources and applications without having to re-authenticate each time. In a circle of trust, it allows users to sign on with one member of an affiliate group and subsequently use other sites within the group without having to sign-on again.
Organizations that implement Liberty Alliance's federated network identity specifications can offer customers, business partners or employees a far more satisfactory online experience with new levels of personalization, security and control over their information. In turn, additionally, it enables businesses to more easily meet their business objectives through the creation of new relationships with each other, development more trusted relationships with their customers, and through substantial cost reduction and avoidance by lower implementation and maintenance costs..." [from the Liberty FAQ document]
- Announcement: "Liberty Alliance Collaborates with Six More Industry Bodies, Cementing Federated Identity's Importance Across Industries. Standards Organizations Join Forces to Address Identity Challenges in the Security, Financial and Mobile Services Sectors."
- Announcement: "Intel Joins the Liberty Alliance Project. Membership Underscores Intel's Commitment to Advance Open Standards Development."
- "Tier 2 Business Guidelines: Mobile Deployments." White paper. February 04, 2004. 30 pages. "For the reader active in the mobile business market, this document provides generic guidance and information sources — legislation and articles — for examining the broad federated-identity business issues within the mobile-services industry, as generally identified by the Alliance. The Tier 2 Scenario document combines the significant business issues that span the various Liberty implementation scenarios (B2B, B2C mobile, etc.) from mutual confidence, risk, liability and compliance perspectives."
- Earlier news:
- "Liberty Publishes Federated Identity Documents on Mobile Deployments and Identity Theft"
- "Liberty Alliance Publishes Final Phase 2 Specifications and Previews Phase 3"
- "Liberty Alliance Publishes Business Requirements and Guidelines for Identity Federation"
- "Liberty Alliance Releases Phase 2 Specifications for Federated Network Identity"
- "Government Agencies Join Liberty Alliance to Support Digital Identity Standards"
- "Sun ONE Identity Server 6.0 Supports Liberty Alliance and SAML Specifications"
- "Liberty Alliance Releases Draft Version 1.1 Specifications for Public Review"
- Liberty Alliance white papers. These papers illustrate the technical and business aspects of the Liberty Alliance specifications.
- Liberty Alliance Project Phase 2 Final Specifications. Phase 2 introduced new elements to Liberty Alliance's Federated Network Identity architecture, including Affiliations; Anonymity; Permissions-based attribute sharing; Identity discovery services; Interaction service; Security profiles; Extended Client Support; Liberty's first service interface specification; Personal Profile Services specification; Employee Profile Services specification.
- Liberty Alliance members
- Organizational Structure of Liberty Alliance
- Liberty Alliance FAQ document
- Liberty Alliance web site
- "Liberty Alliance Specifications for Federated Network Identification and Authorization" - Main reference page.