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identity management

n. ~ 1. Administrative tools used to distinguish and recognize individuals within a system. - 2. Computing · Software controls that identify users and that restrict resources users can access and actions they can take within the system.


Identity management1 in a nontechnical environment can be based on birth certificates, passports, or driver's licenses. - Identity management2 on a single system may be as simple as manually assigned user IDs and passwords. To promote e-commerce, global, interoperable standards for identity management are being proposed by several organizations and corporations.

(RSA Security 2003) When it comes to conducting business online, an organization can only use identities that are trusted. That's where the real value of identity management lies. An effective identity management solution establishes trust in an organization's online environment. Who users are (Authentication) and what users can do (Access management) are tightly coupled and rooted in the ability to manage (Administration) the full life cycle of a digital identity from creation and maintenance to termination, as well as enforcement of organizational access policies. Similarly, the identifiers carried by a transaction (authentication) and the associated security requirements and permissions are critical to enabling automated ebusiness. These components are absolutely critical to the success of an organization's identity management solution.