SOURCE: IBM

May 17, 2005 17:06 ET

IBM Helps Businesses Simplify Identity Management

New Software Helps Companies Manage and Protect Data, Computer Systems and Applications While Simplifying Access for Partners

ARMONK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 17, 2005 -- IBM today announced new identity management software built on open standards -- designed to help customers securely manage employee, partner, customer and other third party user access to corporate applications and critical data -- as the border between an organization's network and outside networks blur.

This offering delivers another major step in helping customers transform their business operations into an on demand environment. Customers can evaluate their business designs, processes and infrastructure to build responsive and automated IT environments.

IBM's new IBM's Tivoli Federated Identity Manager® software helps simplify identity management and security between business and application silos. The software allows companies to connect islands of identity and security information into a cohesive, easy to manage, secure system into the overall network infrastructure.

Identity management has increasingly become a complex issue for businesses today. Developing secure identity and authentication processes within a company can be extremely costly and time consuming, and the challenge increases when extending it to third parties.

The new solution allows for simplified user registration and sign on for internal and external services across the company and their partners' Web sites, as well as automating the creation and deletion of accounts.

It also securely links employees and customers to third party services, such as employees to their benefits provider sites, without having to provide yet another user ID and password or having to re-authenticate the user -- a costly process for companies.

IBM Tivoli Federated Identity Manager helps companies avoid replicating user account administration by leveraging their business partners' identity management and authentication. It also helps reduce misuse and leakage of identity. Today, there is no standards-compliant way for companies to trust each other; therefore, companies locally create user accounts and passwords, which can increase the cost of managing user accounts and create exposures for user identity information.

As a result, customers will no longer have to manually design IT processes individually within their own silos of operation, and then hand-code their integration across different departments. Instead, they can design IT processes once and automate their integration across all areas of operation, saving time and money.

IBM's Tivoli Federated Identity Manager offers:

--  Standards-Based Single Sign On - avoids the need for users to "sign
    in" again when accessing additional third party services such as benefits
    information, ring tones, traffic updates, online gaming and mobile banking.
    Direct access to the additional services provides added convenience to
    users, enabling companies to improve employee productivity, attract new
    subscribers and reach out to new markets.
    
--  Integration of Business Silos - provides a simple and cost effective
    way to integrate business silos within companies that don't share a common
    security infrastructure, a typical result of mergers and acquisitions. This
    significantly reduces the cost of identity infrastructure management by
    eliminating redundant identity systems or platforms for customer ID
    management.
    
--  Better Compliance - Identity authentication and account life cycle
    management is governed by the organization most closely associated with the
    user, improving compliance and corporate governance audit readiness.
    
--  Improved Customer Care - consolidates customer care systems so
    companies can have a "holistic" view of their customer across their
    business silos. For example, although a user may receive one bill for
    multiple services (e.g. DSL, wireless and standard phone), they may have to
    call different customer care numbers for each account. With account
    linking, companies can view all customer accounts and provide access to new
    premium services.
    
IBM has been working closely with companies and standards organizations to drive support for federated identity standards. Tivoli Federated Identity Manager supports Liberty, SAML, WS-Federation, WS-Security and WS-Trust standards and specifications.

IBM is leveraging relationships with hundreds of business partners that already integrate with IBM's identity management software to help speed deployment of Tivoli Federated Identity Manager. IBM Business Partners such as DataPower, Layer 7 Technologies, Reactivity, Sarvega and VeriSign are actively working with customers to deploy solutions using Tivoli Federated Identity Manager.

"Businesses want to interact more efficiently with business partners and customers, but the concern is, how do you securely exchange user information between trusted providers and still achieve compliance objectives?" said Arvind Krishna, vice president of provisioning and security development, Tivoli Software, IBM. "Business agility is very important, and decreasing the time that it takes to securely integrate your partner ecosystem is a fundamental capability that all businesses need to address. IBM has delivered a solution based on standards that builds the management capabilities into the actual infrastructure -- which lets customers focus on their own core businesses."

According to an April 2005 Burton Group report, the increased emphasis on identity federation is the outgrowth of an industry-wide trend toward service-oriented architectures. Fueling both of these trends is businesses' need to interact more efficiently with partners and customers.(1)

Tivoli Federated Identity Manager uses the IBM Integrated Solutions Console, a self-managing autonomic technology that helps IT administrators by aggregating various user interfaces into a single console or "dashboard."

IBM's Federated Identity Management solution integrates with third-party portals, XML firewalls and application servers, as well as the IBM WebSphere middleware platform, including WebSphere Application Server, WebSphere Portal and WebSphere Business Integration Solutions.

About Tivoli software from IBM

Tivoli software from IBM helps organizations better manage information technology (IT) resources, tasks and processes in order to meet ever-shifting business requirements and deliver flexible and responsive IT service management. Tivoli's portfolio spans software for security, storage, performance and availability, configuration and operations, and IT lifecycle management. The software enables companies to manage IT infrastructure more efficiently and effectively, ensures that IT infrastructure is compliant with business policies and regulations, and reduces complexity by leveraging best practices, process integration and automation across the entire infrastructure. For additional information, go to www.ibm.com/software/tivoli

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key IBM Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that enable customers, large and small, to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. For more information about IBM, visit www.ibm.com.

(1) Mike Neuenschwander, “Federating a Distributed World: Asserting Next-Generation Identity Standards,” 15 April, 2005, Burton Group Identity and Privacy Strategies Research Report

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