New members and New Year push for Liberty Alliance ID group

New members and New Year push for Liberty Alliance ID group

The Liberty Alliance Project, a business and technology consortium formed to develop open specifications for federated network identity, reports that a majority of members plan to implement the Liberty version 1.1 specifications within the year.

The Alliance also announced 22 new participants - including HSBC, US banking technology group Bits, Meridea Financial Software, Fair Isaac and Oberthur Card Systems - bringing the total membership base to 150 organisations.

Liberty says that more than 70 percent of all respondents to an internal poll expect to incorporate the specifications into products and/or services for their customers. Approximately 52 percent also placed high priority on using the specifications to benefit their employees. And 59 percent of respondents said they plan to implement the version 1.1 specifications within the next 12 months or have already implemented them.

In the financial services sector, Niteo Partners, a strategic consulting subsidiary of NEC, is working with the largest US cash management banks and the Financial Services Technology Consortium (FSTC) to construct a multi-bank services network for securely exchanging customer account, transaction, and credential data via a set of interoperable web services. The Liberty specifications and the SAML standard from OASIS will be included as key components of the overall security framework for this bank-to-bank network.

In addition, NEC and Niteo have recently launched a project with The Bond Market Association to lead the development of an industry accessible data portal for servicing fixed income securities dealing, trading and settlement. This data portal, as proposed, will also support the Liberty specifications.

"Both the FSTC and TBMA projects are about improving connectivity in financial systems and establishing common standards for business interactions using innovative, open technologies," says Michael Versace, national director of financial services for Niteo Partners. "Each of these initiatives will need to produce technical platforms and business rules that enable federated and secure identity-based transactions."

Also in the financial services space, Communicator Inc has said it will complete and deliver its Liberty-enabled Hub ID product line by the end of this month.

Communicator Hub ID has been managing over 300,000 identities as part of the SecuritiesHub initiative with eight of the largest financial institutions since 1999. Because Hub ID is a managed service on a hosted infrastructure, all clients of that service will in turn be able to leverage the Liberty Alliance standard, and offer trusted single sign-on services to their mutual customers.

"Responding to the marketplace demands for closer and more secure interaction within and across business boudries, enterprises are connecting in secure gated communities," says Serge Shinkar, product manager of Hub ID for Communicator Inc. "Incorporating the Liberty specifications lowers the technical barrier of entry and allows us to offer our clients an easy and secure way to join these gated communities quickly."

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