Tight schedule to meet deadline for ID cards

The Defense Department has reached about 80 percent compliance with the new federal standards for worker identification cards. But achieving that last 20 percent will take the full 18 months before the October 2006 deadline.

Mary Dixon, deputy director of the Defense Manpower Data Center, said DOD has begun the work to meet the requirements outlined in Federal Information Processing Standard 201. But it will take until 2009 for the de-partment to reissue all of its 4 million Common Access Cards to meet the technical specifications of FIPS-201 and related special publications from the National Institute of Standards and Technology requiring contactless chips and biometric data.

'A big issue for us is interoperability between vendor cards,' Dixon said recently at the 2005 Interagency Resources Management Conference. 'We also have to figure out how to make sure everyone we hire goes through the National Agency Check. That is a big challenge for everyone.'

Agencies have until June to submit a plan to the Office of Management and Budget describing how they will comply with FIPS-201. By Oct. 27, agencies must implement the first phase, called Personal Identity Verification I, which covers identity-proofing, registration and issuance processes. Agencies then have until October 2007 to begin issuing interoperable cards.

'This is not easy, but it is not impossible either,' she said. 'Agencies should lean on more experienced agencies and build on the work of others or use existing systems.'

Joint command wants handheld translators

The Joint Forces Command is looking for secure, portable handheld computers that support speech translation applications.

The command issued a request for information April 28 in asking vendors to provide white papers with summaries of technologies available within six months.

The closing date is Oct. 31. To read the RFI, go to and enter 420 in the box.

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