NSTIC to grant $3.7 m for identity pilot programmes
30 November 2015 11:03 GMT

The National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) has announced funding of $3.7 million for new pilot programmes in its latest round of grants.

Projects that will be funded include initiatives to secure online transactions, protect online identities and new ways to identify people online without a password.

“The way we represent ourselves online is fundamental to nearly everything we do,” said Mike Garcia, acting director of the NSTIC National Program Office. “We need more — and better — tools to make online identity easier and more secure, and to advance the commercial deployment of privacy-enhancing technologies.”

The funding will go to secure online authentication projects. For example, MorphoTrust USAwill get just over $1 million to work on preventing the theft of personal state tax refunds.

“As ‘America’s Innovation Agency,’ the Commerce Department is committed to supporting innovation and industrial competitiveness that enhances our economic security,” said Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews. “These pilots will provide innovative, practical solutions to ensure the trust we need to combat the growing threat of cyber threats and keep our online economy growing.”

NSTIC said Morpho hopes to use the online driver licensing process to create “trustworthy electronic IDs” for individuals that will then help secure other online government processes.

Meanwhile, HealthIDx will be granted just under of $1 million to protect medical patients’ identity and information, and Galois will also get nearly $2 million to fund a tool for storing and sharing private data online.

“These pilots will provide innovative, practical solutions to ensure the trust we need to combat the growing threat of cyber threats and keep our online economy growing,” said Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews in a statement.

This is the fourth round of pilot grants awarded to support implementation of NSTIC, which was launched by the Obama administration in 2011 and is managed by NIST. The strategy supports collaboration between the private sector, advocacy groups and public-sector agencies to encourage the adoption of secure, efficient, easy-to-use and interoperable identity credentials to access online services in a way that promotes confidence, privacy, choice and innovation.

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