Govt logon service approved

The State Services Commission will be first to use the service

The Government Logon Service, a major element of the e-government authentication function, has passed its tests with a “reference agency” and has moved into its production phase.

The State Services Commission will be the first to use the GLS, starting next month, says SSC spokesman Jason Ryan. Other agencies will follow later this year, in an “initial implementation” phase, and the project will then move into a full rollout.

The GLS provides a means for users of government services online — both staff and, where appropriate, members of the public — to establish a key correlated with their identity and a set of services they can use. The system then verifies the use of that key with subsequent transactions.

The SSC’s initial use of GLS will be exclusively for government staffers, to implement shared workspaces and authenticate staff posting job vacancies on the website. The system will not be public at this stage.

At the same time, the standards cover-ing the whole field of e-government authentication have been finalised, and will be formally launched at Parliament today. These standards have come out of the advice collected in the SSC’s 2004 “best practice framework” for authentication and the Internal Affairs department’s work on the evidence required for identity. “They outline current accepted good practice for the design or redesign of the authentication component of online services that require confidence in the identity of transacting parties,” says the SSC.

The standards will include an “evidence of identity standard”, which sets out how users of government services will present sufficient evidence of their identity to obtain an authentication key to use government services at various different security levels.

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