The Alliance Industry Councils–Mid-Year Update
Members continue to be highly active in the Smart Card Alliance industry councils in 2011. Since January, councils have completed more than 14 projects, including eight white papers, two industry comments submissions, one webinar, and three workshops, and have issued eight news releases on Council activities or industry positions. Projects have focused on the hottest topics in the smart card industry–the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC), FIPS 201 and the Personal Identity Verification (PIV) card, EMV migration, Near Field Communication (NFC), healthcare identity management, and open payments in transit. And the councils continue with a strong set of activities into the second half of 2011, with 18 active projects.
This month’s feature article reviews highlights of each Council’s activities this year and previews what’s still to come in the second half.
The Healthcare Council leads Smart Card Alliance efforts to educate the healthcare market on why smart card technology is the appropriate solution for healthcare identity management applications.
2011 Healthcare Council activities included:
- Publishing a new white paper, Getting to Meaningful Use and Beyond: How Smart Card Technology Can Support Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records, which outlines the ways in which smart card-based systems can better position healthcare organizations and providers for meaningful use of electronic health records, while addressing many of the security and privacy challenges that come with electronic health records and health data exchange.
- Submitting comments to the Office of the National Coordinator, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, on Stage 2 meaningful use requirements.
- Planning the upcoming webinar, Smart Health ID Cards: Addressing Challenges with Patient Identity Management and Authentication, being held on September 13, at 1pm ET/10am PT. The webinar will feature the American Medical Association Health Security Card pilot and the Wyckoff Heights Medical Center medical smart card as examples of smart health ID card programs.
- Developing a smart card guide supplement to the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) Health Identification Card Implementation Guide, to describe WEDI-compliant smart health ID card designs.
- Collaborating with the Secure ID Coalition to contribute to the development of a return-on-investment model for a smart card-based Medicare card.
While the smallest council by participation, Healthcare Council members are active and focused on developing high-impact deliverables to showcase the benefits that smart card technology bring to addressing the healthcare industry’s needs to authenticate patient and provider identities, secure personal health information, reduce fraud, and meet new government regulations for use of electronic health records.
The Identity Council is focused on promoting the need for technologies and usage solutions regarding human identity information to address the challenges of securing identity information and reducing identity fraud. The Council is leading the Alliance efforts on cybersecurity and on providing input on the NSTIC.
Identity Council activities in 2011 included:
- Submitting comments to NIST on the Notice of Inquiry (NOI), “Models for a Governance Structure for the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC).”
- Collaborating with the Physical Access Council on the white paper, Personal Identity Verification Interoperability (PIV-I) for Non-Federal Issuers: Trusted Identities for Citizens across States, Counties, Cities and Businesses, describing the benefits of FIPS 201, PIV standards and PIV-I framework for state and local governments to enable interoperability and trust across different government issuers for a wide variety of identity credentialing programs.
- Collaborating with National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) and the Physical Access Council on the webinar, Personal Identity Verification Interoperability (PIV-I) for Non-Federal Issuers, held on March 17.
The Council is currently developing the statements of work for two projects: a series of briefs on the role of smart card technology in NSTIC and a white paper documenting enterprise use cases for PIV-interoperable (PIV-I) credentials.
The Payments Council 2011 activities are focused on the EMV roadmap for the U.S. and on NFC contactless mobile payments and payment-related applications. With almost daily announcements of new NFC developments or EMV activities, the Council’s high-profile educational outreach efforts have placed the Alliance in the center of the industry discussion.
Council activities in 2011 have included:
- Publishing the comprehensive white paper, Card Payments Roadmap in the U.S.: How Will EMV Impact the Future Payments Infrastructure?, to educate stakeholders across the payments value chain (issuers, acquirers/processors, merchants and ATM owners) about the critical aspects of deploying an EMV solution in their business environments in the U.S.
- Developing and holding the full-day workshop, EMV Roadmap Implementation Options for the U.S. [members-only access], at the Smart Card Alliance Annual Conference in May.
- Publishing EMV and NFC “facts at a glance” to answer frequently-asked questions.
- Publishing an updated Contactless Payments Security Q&A to address media reports about the security of contactless payment transactions and the risk of fraud to consumers, and to highlight the improved security that contactless smart card technology brings to payment transactions.
For the second half of 2011, the Council will be publishing a new white paper describing the current state of the mobile payments market and the positioning of NFC mobile contactless payments vs. other approaches. The Council will also be holding two webinars on EMV to assist merchants, merchant acquirers, issuers and issuer processors with EMV migration.
Physical Access Council
The Physical Access Council continues to lead the Smart Card Alliance efforts in providing guidance on the implementation of FIPS 201 and the PIV card.
The Council completed the following projects in 2011:
- Publishing an updated white paper, Smart Cards and Biometrics, describing the benefits of combining smart cards and biometrics to enable strong verification and authentication of an individual’s identity.
- Publishing the white paper, Personal Identity Verification Interoperability (PIV-I) for Non-Federal Issuers: Trusted Identities for Citizens across States, Counties, Cities and Businesses, in collaboration with the Identity Council.
- Developing and holding the well-attended webinar, Personal Identity Verification Interoperability (PIV-I) for Non-Federal Issuers, in collaboration with NASCIO and the Identity Council.
- Developing and submitting extensive industry comments on the NIST draft FIPS 201-2.
During 2011, the Council has also launched projects focused on enterprise credentialing. The Council is currently working on a white paper defining benefits of and best practices for enterprises moving to credentials that meet the PIV technical specifications, with publication planned in late October.
The Transportation Council has focused its efforts in 2011 on providing guidance on transit use of open payments for fare collection–accepting open bank cards directly at the point of entry.
2011 Transportation Council activities have included:
- Publishing an update to the white paper, A Guide to Prepaid Cards for Transit Agencies, providing guidance on what transit agencies should look for when evaluating the feasibility and benefits of using prepaid cards as one element of an open fare collection system.
- Developing and holding two successful workshops, Open Bank Card Payments for Transit [members-only access], at the Smart Card Alliance Payments Summit in Salt Lake City, UT, in February, and at the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Fare Collection Workshop in Miami, FL, in March.
- Developing an updated white paper on open payments in transit, with publication planned for late 2011.
The Council has several new projects being defined including: a white paper on NFC and transit; a white paper on the impact of the financial regulatory environment on transit; and outreach and educational programs for small- and medium-sized transit agencies. The Council will also be collaborating with the Payments Council to develop the agenda and content for the 2012 Payments Summit.
Accessing Council Deliverables
All council publications are promoted through Alliance press releases and events and are available at no charge on the Alliance web site, providing the councils with a broad audience for their educational material. Alliance publications have extensive visibility and are typically in the top Google search listings for topics related to smart cards.
In the first half of 2011, there were over 168,000 accesses and downloads of council publications! The figure below shows the distribution of downloads by topic area.
Who Participates in Industry Councils?
Over 470 individuals from more than 100 organizations (76% of member organizations) participated in at least one council in the past year. Each council is managed by elected officers and steering committee, with members volunteering to lead and/or participate in the many council projects.
Councils couldn’t accomplish their goals without the commitment of individual members. Each year we recognize the top individual contributors in each of the industry councils. Our 2011 honor roll included over 150 individuals who contributed their time and expertise to develop the authoritative educational resources that the Alliance is known for.
For More Information or to Participate in the Councils
If you are interested in following Council activities, the monthly Smart Card Talk newsletter features Council news in the “From the Alliance Office” section. Council publications and member information can be found at /activities-councils.
Alliance members can also review the council quarterly and annual reports on the Smart Card Alliance members-only web site.
All Alliance members are encouraged to join an industry council. You can participate in projects, help to set direction for Alliance activities, or simply “listen in” and use the councils to learn more about the industry and smart card applications. If you are an Alliance member and would like to participate in an industry council, contact Cathy Medich ([email protected]).