About Smart Cards : Applications : Identity

Identity Applications

Smart Card Alliance Identity Resources

Smart Cards and Identity Applications

Smart card technology is currently recognized as the most appropriate technology for identity applications that must meet critical security requirements, including:

Countries around the world use smart cards for secure identity applications. In addition, both government organizations and public corporations (including Microsoft, Sun Microsystems, Chevron, and Boeing) use smart employee ID cards to secure access to physical facilities and computer systems and networks.

Additional information on the use of smart cards for identity applications can be found on the enterprise ID and government application pages and from the Smart Card Alliance Identity Council.

Identity in Cyberspace

U.S. citizens are increasingly using the Internet for sensitive transactions, like banking, mortgage applications, buying and trading stocks, and reviewing healthcare information. Given this, there are very real problems of identity management, privacy and security in cyberspace. Smart card technology (in various form factors including cards, USB tokens and mobile phones) enables strong multi-factor authentication on the Internet.

The Obama administration has recognized the need for stronger online identity authentication and established the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) initiative. NSTIC broadly defines an Identity Ecosystem that would re-establish trust and better protect online identities. According to the Howard A. Schmidt on the White House blog, “Through the strategy we seek to enable a future where individuals can voluntarily choose to obtain a secure, interoperable, and privacy-enhancing credential (e.g., a smart identity card, a digital certificate on their cell phone, etc.) from a variety of service providers–both public and private–to authenticate themselves online for different types of transactions (e.g., online banking, accessing electronic health records, sending email, etc.).”

Additional information on the use of smart cards for identity applications in cyberspace can be found on the Smart Card Alliance Identity Council page.

Other Identity Resources