Smart Card Alliance paper explores Fido on smart cards
03 May 2016 15:48 GMT

The Smart Card Alliance has released a white paper highlighting the benefits of smart card technology in FIDO authentication standard implementations.

The white paper, “Smart Card Technology and the FIDO Protocols,” was created by the Smart Card Alliance’s Identity Council. 

“The FIDO Alliance is making great strides in standardizing strong authentication to replace easy-to-hack passwords. Incorporating smart card technology with an implementation of either of the FIDO protocols can strengthen the security of the identity authentication process and bring the benefits of smart card technology to a wider audience,” said Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance. “This white paper demonstrates how the addition of smart card technology to a FIDO protocol implementation is a critical piece of the puzzle to make the online world more trusted.”

To describe the role of smart card technology in enhancing the security of FIDO implementations, the white paper includes:

•         An overview of the FIDO principles and protocols, including the Universal Second Factor (FIDO U2F) and the Universal Authentication Framework (FIDO UAF)

•         A description of the security benefits of using smart card technology in FIDO protocol implementations

•         Examples of use cases currently implementing the FIDO protocols with smart card technology, including Gemalto, Google, Infineon Technologies, Morpho (Safran), NXP Semiconductors, Oberthur Technologies and Yubico implementations

“The FIDO Alliance supports this effort from the Smart Card Alliance to educate and broaden the use of the FIDO authentication standards. With FIDO specifications where all user credentials are stored on-device to protect them from scalable attack, utilizing trusted hardware such as a secure element can offer additional protection for those credentials,” said Brett McDowell, executive director of the FIDO Alliance. “This resource is a great example of how our liaison program brings organizations together to propel the widespread adoption of the FIDO standards, and we look forward to future collaboration with Smart Card Alliance.”

This white paper is part of the Smart Card Alliance and FIDO Alliance liaison partnership, which allows cooperation and collaboration between the two organizations to accelerate informed adoption of the FIDO standards.

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