Security Magazine

Leading Federal Department Achieves FICAM Goals with Quantum Secure’s SAFE

September 19, 2013

SAFE for FICAM is designed to help federal agencies and departments in aligning with the FICAM guidelines without disrupting their existing operations and infrastructure and at the same time by avoiding any additional costs. One such customer is a leading federal department, which has pioneered its physical ICAM governance program with SAFE.

This federal department had manual processes including paper-based forms for provisioning of identities and their physical access. It realized the importance of aligning with FICAM and wanted to ensure the usage of PIV cards for physical and logical access while providing real-time integration between different identity sources and PACS.  This department has numerous “optives” (or components/bureaus), each with its own congressionally defined budget and mission, able to function semi-independently of the main department headquarters.  PIV card issuance for all optives is handled centrally, but not access control policy.  The challenge was how to leverage a central PIV card database across numerous optives and connect to an enterprise PACS system, while allowing each optive to define its own policy and segregate identity data by optive.

After much research and after having explored the possibility of building a homegrown solution, this federal department decided on SAFE for FICAM. SAFE for FICAM provided the following functions:

  • Centrally manage physical identities across the department and provide the underlying agencies to share their attributes.
  • Interface with the authoritative source for PIV cardholders – IDMS system, and automatically synchronize the on-/off-boarding of these identities into the PACS.
  • Perpetual validation of the PKI certificate on PIV card, i.e. at an interval of every 18 hours.
  • Used the SAFE integration framework to connect its multiple proprietary PACS and eliminate the risks associated with erroneous provisioning and de-provisioning.
  • Manage different optives within one solution while ensuring segregation of identity, access privilege and visitor data.