Credential exchange enabled on DHS info sharing network

Credential exchange enabled on DHS info sharing network

Federal, state and local government users of the Homeland Security Information Network now have a simpler way to verify their identities for secure information sharing.

HSIN, the network that supports intergovernmental information sharing and collaboration, has implemented a backend attribute exchange, a system that streamlines identity management by keeping users' security credentials stored on local systems but making them accessible from other network locations. It now allows users to verify their identities at HSIN outposts without their credentials having to move insecurely between the locations.

According to officials at the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate, the exchange improves identification and verification by determining whether a user has a legitimate need to access information on another network in the system.

About 55,000 people use the 10-year-old HSIN for planning, response and daily operations, according to DHS. They include federal, state and local officials involved in law enforcement, public health, emergency services, infrastructure protection, port security and other functions that require access to homeland security information. Private-sector organizations are also eligible to join HSIN, which shares sensitive but unclassified information among members.

The system was developed by Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and Queralt, using DHS funding.

This article originally appeared on FCW, a sister site to GCN.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a staff writer at FCW.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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