Sun Leads Authentication Alliance - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


Sun Leads Authentication Alliance

A group of A-list businesses is proposing an industry standard for online authentication that could compete with Microsoft's Passport.

Sun Microsystems is leading a group of A-list businesses inproposing an industry standard for online authentication that could compete with Microsoft's Passport. Among the 33 companies backing the so-called Liberty Alliance Project are Bank of America, Nokia, Real Networks, and General Motors.

The organization aims to create specs for a standard that rides on top of digital-signature software. These products are supposed to make sure that people online are who they say they are. Sun and its partners didn't specify the technology that the project will employ, but one Sun exec indicated the Liberty Alliance has found Lightweight Directory Access Protocol to be a useful protocol for authentication over the Internet. Other companies and organizations, such as the open-source Apache Foundation, could provide software development as well.

GM IS exec Tony Scott says no deadlines for the standard have been set yet, but "there is a sense of urgency." Scott says lack of a standard is the biggest barrier to "meaningful" E-commerce. Other members of the group have said that the Liberty project is not merely an effort to stifle Microsoft's Passport authentication software for Web sites. But they admitted discomfort with a single company setting the standard for what promises to be a prominent feature of E-commerce. "Microsoft hasn't made an attempt to open authorization," says Simon Phipps, Sun's chief technical evangelist.

Project members also said development efforts they coordinated will closely match the functions of Passport, which is a planned component of Microsoft's XP operating system. Ultimately, they see a standard that covers interactions via everything from PCs and credit cards to TVs and dashboard computers.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
COVID-19: Using Data to Map Infections, Hospital Beds, and More
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  3/25/2020
Enterprise Guide to Robotic Process Automation
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  3/23/2020
How Startup Innovation Can Help Enterprises Face COVID-19
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  3/24/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll