Liberty Alliance releases ID management guidelines

Source: The Liberty Alliance Project

The Liberty Alliance Project, a global consortium for open federated identity standards and identity-based Web services, today announced the release of business and policy guidelines for helping organizations address and manage the business, legal and privacy challenges of deploying federated identity management.

The guidelines have been developed based on the experiences of Liberty members who have implemented federation and serve as a resource for accelerating the wide-scale deployment of federated identity solutions.

With over one billion Liberty-enabled identities and devices expected globally by the end of 2006, Liberty has proven that the technology for deploying successful federation is in place. But Liberty also recognizes that in order to fully leverage the benefits of federation, technology alone is not enough. Policy decision makers need tools to help identify and manage the many business considerations involved in developing Circles of Trust, the legal and contractual frameworks governing federation between organizations. Liberty's Business and Policy Deployment Guidelines, developed by the Alliance's Public Policy Expert Group (PPEG), is the first of many tools and documents to come from Liberty to provide assistance with this decision framework.

Liberty Alliance is the only global organization addressing the business, policy and technology aspects of identity management and the only identity-focused organization that has a Public Policy Expert Group, which provides advice and guidance on privacy functionality within Liberty specifications. PPEG member representatives from BIPAC, the US General Services Administration, Oracle and Sun Microsystems spearheaded the development of the deployment guidelines by leveraging their work in open federated identity management.

"Policy decision makers around the world continuously point to business, legal and policy concerns as the biggest barriers to implementing industry 'circles of trust' or federations," said Dan Blum, Senior VP and Research Director at Burton Group. "Resources designed to address these issues will be welcomed by organizations looking to deploy federated identity solutions."

Organizations developing Circles of Trust need to address, among other things, what type of information will be shared among companies, how and when it will be shared, what security procedures will be used to maintain the confidentiality of such information and how participants may join or leave the Circle of Trust. Liberty's Business and Policy Deployment Guidelines will help policy decision managers better manage these issues in order to develop Circles of Trust faster and more successfully.

"Companies have a lot to consider as they move to establish Circles of Trust," said Michael Aisenberg, chair of Liberty's PPEG and director of government relations, VeriSign, Inc. "We've created these guidelines to jump-start the business conversations policy decision managers need to have when creating Circles of Trust and to help organizations learn from our experience in developing open federated identity solutions."

The release of the Business and Policy Guidelines is an example of how Liberty works to deliver real world solutions that solve real world identity problems. Liberty members work collaboratively to create identity specifications, guidelines and best practices based on well-defined business requirements - always involving end users in the process. This is the model Liberty has based its work on since the organization was formed in 2001. Liberty's Business and Policy Deployment Guidelines will be available on October 11, 2005.

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