FIDO Alliance Signs Up NIST for Post-Password Protection

The Fast IDentity Online (FIDO) Alliance has started signing up government agencies to directly participate in the development of FIDO standards. The first to join are the United States’ NSTIC/NIST; and the UK Office of the Cabinet.

The FIDO Government membership program has been developed in response to government agency demands worldwide. Many agencies are taking the lead in their own countries and collaborating globally to move beyond passwords with strong authentication. Governments share the password problem, and have the same security concerns, pain points and challenges as private industry, plus they must play the role of policy maker and be good stewards in advancing their country’s economy. 

“As part of our ongoing effort to move the world away from passwords and to stronger forms of authentication, the FIDO Alliance is broadening its membership classes to include a FIDO Government Class membership. This will enable governments around the world to contribute their unique needs and perspectives to the next developments in FIDO standards,” said Dustin Ingalls, president of the FIDO Alliance. “We welcome our first government members and look forward to increased participation in this new membership class. We look forward to working with them to develop universal standards for strong authentication that are more secure, private and easier-to-use than passwords.”

NIST, which is home to the National Program Office for implementing the NSTIC, said that it is committed to bringing stronger authentication to individuals. “The fact that FIDO has now welcomed government participation is a logical and exciting step toward further advancement of the Identity Ecosystem; we look forward to continued progress,” said Mike Garcia, acting director of the NSTIC NPO.

 “I can see a day in the near future when some consumers will start to insist on leveraging a FIDO-based authenticator to access government services through Connect.Gov,” added Paul Grassi, NSTIC standards and technology lead.

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