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GCN : August 2014
directly with third-party app vendors to embed our security, our code, so to speak, around their application so when users pull it down to their device or when a citizen pulls it down to their device, they can adopt the policies you ve set," Hurley said. Identity crisis One reason why mobile apps used to be informational was because agencies didn t know who their consumers might be, Symantec s Etheridge said. That s less of an issue today and leads to two questions: What could you do differently for your citi- zens if you knew who was on the other end of the connection? The answer is a lot -- as long as certified identities are involved. To get started, agencies first need an e-government vision, and officials must decide what could be moved to an elec- tronic format for mobile consumption. They must consider the sensitivity of the infor- mation involved, and they should look at authentication measures beyond user names and passwords, which are easily hacked, Etheridge said. The real heart of the problem, however, he said, is proving the identities of citizens wishing to access services. "Any time in the history of the computer industry that you ve dealt with any kind of certified identity, it s usually dealt with something that s called in-person proofing," which means physically bringing ID such as a driver s license or passport for someone to examine and approve as legit, he said. Moving that process online requires government at all levels to accept trusted credentials. Plenty of benefit can come from that, Etheridge said. For example, managing the provisioning of contractors credentials would become easier; law enforcement, public safety and first responders could share information on external portals; and students could access their entire education history. "The departments of Justice and Homeland Security, I believe, are operating some programs now that are affecting what states and municipalities have to do to prove identity before granting access to criminal justice information systems," he said. "That identity should be, we believe, reusable at a very high level, not just a credential issued so that you are certified to be an officer in Travis County, Texas, for instance." A trusted identity means "it s a validated, person-specific user," Etheridge said. It also means it s interoperable across the web so websites no longer have to require their own passwords, and it s certified according to the Federal Identity Credential and Access Management initiative, which provides a list of requirements developers must meet. Additionally, a trusted identity must come from a trusted source, meet government and health care security requirements, and embed privacy. Symantec has implemented Norton Secure Login. To sign up, users go to the website of a Symantec customer and follow a process called Precise ID from Experian, a credit bureau that asks applicants ques- tions based on their credit history to vet them. Experian sends a success or fail mes- sage back to Symantec. If a user passes, Symantec provisions an account that can be used at multiple websites. If they want, users can add another layer of protection: two-factor authentication. A hard token can be issued or a soft one installed on a mobile device. Then when users log in, they must enter their user name, password and the code from the token. What sets Symantec apart Mobile apps that are secure and being used by honest consumers are growing both in need and in ease of creation. Symantec s solutions are based on the 32-year-old company s established portfolio of anti-mal- ware, authentication, data loss prevention and managed public-key infrastructure that it s bringing to the mobile market. "Other vendors don t have this portfo- lio that we ve developed over the years," Hurley said. "What we re trying to do here is very seamless. Instead of trying to cobble together four or five vendors to make a solution work, you re dealing with one ven- dor and an end-to-end solution." "The focus that Symantec is taking toward mobile is, Any device, anywhere, any time. " -- David Hurley, mobility and identity sales lead at Symantec SPONSORED CONTENT http://www.symantec.com/user- Application solutions visit http://www.symantec.com/mobility.