ACES certificates get first test

ACES certificates get first test

Students, schools and lenders are getting digital certificates for their transactions with government agencies under the Access America for Students program.

AT&T Corp. will issue the digital certificates for the first multiagency task order under the General Services Administration's Access Certificates for Electronic Services program. The effort will test the interoperability of ACES certificates.

The Education, Labor and Veterans Affairs departments and the Postal Service will participate in the project.

Education will pilot use of the certificates for student aid applications, Labor for its Career Management Account, VA for online applications and status verification, and USPS for electronic change of address.

A certificate verifies a user's identity and provides the public half of a public-private key pair for encrypting and digitally signing transactions.

'William Jackson, Tony Lee Orr and Susan M. Menke

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