EU group decides on SAML for identity project

A group co-funded by the European Union will use as the core protocol for an identity system designed to integrate member states, but the group is still investigating if can provide some future benefit.

Vasilis Koulolias, the dissemination leader for the group – Secure Identity Across Borders Linked (STORK) – said the SAML 2 will be the core protocol for its common identity framework. The framework would help federate identities among EU members so a user could be authenticated in one country and use those credentials to access information or services in another country.

"This choice was mainly driven by SAML adoption in current member states' eGovernment infrastructure, its ease of implementation, the availability of components, its general recognition as an official standard, and its wide acceptance in the federated identity world (Liberty Alliance, etc.)," Koulolias said in a e-mail in response to a Network World that ran last week.

Specifically, Koulolias said SAML's "holder of key" profile is being "investigated in order to minimize residual risks common in several identity federation approaches, and industry has been invited to lend its support in advancing their products along that road."

Members of the Information Card Foundation and others argued at STORK's Industry Group meeting late last month that Information Card technology could fill that role.

Drummond Reed, executive director of the Information Card Foundation, said last months discussion at the Industry Group meeting with STORK project leaders convinced them to consider Information Card technology.

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