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Gemalto and Vodafone Group R&D Win IDDY Award for Remote Strong Authentication of OpenIDs

Gemalto, the world leader in digital security, and Vodafone Group R&D have been awarded an IDDY—Identity Deployment of the Year Award—for a collaborative proof-of-concept identity application that enables smart card-based strong authentication of an OpenID across the Internet or a mobile network.

OpenID is an industry initiative to allow individuals to use the same username and password at many different websites. In the concept application, Gemalto and Vodafone combined the ease of use of OpenID, which does not require any software installation on the end-user’s computer, and the security of smart card-based two-factor authentication.

The innovative concept provides for greater personal identity protection when accessing websites. The user has the ability to prove their identity (i.e., authenticate) by entering their username and password or using two-factor authentication with a physical device (e.g., a mobile phone or a USB token). The identity application provides remote strong authentication services over IP networks, wired or wireless, to allow secure access to the federated websites.

For example, the authentication can be provided by the Universal Integrated Circuit Card (UICC), a high performance smart card that can host GSM SIM and 3G UMTS applications together with additional value generating applications. The identity application located in the UICC enables the end-user to access the Internet using a PC and obtain strong authentication of his/her OpenID from the UICC, which can be either located in a cell phone or in a Gemalto smart dongle connected to the Internet.

The identity application communicates with the UICC service using SIP (the Session Initiation Protocol, an industry standard broadly used in Voice-Over-Internet communications, in Internet chat and in other Internet Multimedia applications) to authenticate users with either a public key infrastructure (PKI) or a one-time password (OTP).

“Remote authentication is a new idea leading to great opportunities for operators, such as the possibility to offer digital signature as a service to Internet providers using the secure UICC platform already present inside our customer’s mobile phones,” said Patrick Waters, head of enterprise research program, Vodafone Group R&D. “We see many possibilities for its everyday use.”

“This application enables innovative digital security solutions to take advantage of personal identity features while at the same time better protecting these personal identities,” said Jean-Louis Carrara, vice president of Gemalto’s North American telecommunications business unit. “Wireless operators can now take advantage of their formidable identity management capability and of their customer-centric infrastructure built around UICC cards, using them as IP-networked cryptographic computers that enable secure services, with single sign-on for their converged services and authentication-as-a-service for corporations and external service providers.”

Gemalto’s and Vodafone’s IDDY award was announced at CSO magazine’s Digital ID World 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Previous winners of the IDDY include Aetna, Citi, Deutsche Telekom and NTT Labs. The IDDY program is part of the Kantara Initiative, a global identity community working to solve harmonization and interoperability challenges among identity-enabled enterprise, Web 2.0 and cloud applications and services.

About Vodafone

Vodafone is the world's leading international mobile communications group with approximately 303 million proportionate customers as of end of March 2009. Vodafone currently has equity interests in 31 countries across five continents and around 40 partner networks worldwide. For more information, please visit www.vodafone.com

About Gemalto

Gemalto (Euronext NL 0000400653 GTO) is the world leader in digital security with 2008 annual revenues of €1.68 billion, and 10,000 employees operating out of 75 offices, research and service centers in 40 countries.

Gemalto is at the heart of our evolving digital society. The freedom to communicate, travel, shop, bank, entertain, and work—anytime, anywhere—has become an integral part of what people want and expect, in ways that are convenient, enjoyable and secure.

Gemalto delivers on the growing demands of billions of people worldwide for mobile connectivity, identity and data protection, credit card safety, health and transportation services, e-government and national security. We do this by supplying to governments, wireless operators, banks and enterprises a wide range of secure personal devices, such as subscriber identification modules (SIM), Universal Identity Circuit Cards (UICC) in mobile phones, smart banking cards, smart card access badges, electronic passports, and USB tokens for online identity protection. To complete the solution we also provide software, systems and services to help our customers achieve their goals.

As the use of Gemalto’s software and secure devices increases with the number of people interacting in the digital and wireless world, the company is poised to thrive over the coming years. For more information please visit www.gemalto.com.

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