GSA plots course for next Connect.gov iteration

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Just months into the pilot for Connect.gov, the General Services Administration is looking forward to the next iteration of the federal cloud-based exchange for digital identity management.

GSA published a request for information last week “to learn the viability, feasibility, cost-effectiveness, pricing methodology, industry readiness and to explore areas of innovation to better understand the [full operational capability] of Connect.gov,” the RFI says.

Currently, Connect.gov is in the initial operational capability phase, a sort of pilot, led by GSA, which runs the program management office; the U.S. Postal Service, which heads the technical side of the project; and the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, which serves in an advisory capacity to the program.

These agencies, with third-party verification partners like ID.me, PayPal and Verizon, provide a one-stop shop for citizens to securely log into federal applications. So far, NIST, and the Agriculture and Veterans Affairs departments have integrated Connect.gov into their systems.

“Connect.Gov provides a secure, privacy-enhancing service that conveniently connects people to online government services and applications using an approved digital credential they may already have and trust,” the RFI says. “This eliminates the need for consumers to maintain multiple logins for government agencies.”

With the RFI, GSA proposes two models: The first would rely on two vendors to serve as a technical broker and a business broker inside the GSA program management office. It most resembles the current Connect.gov model. The second model would consolidate the responsibilities of the two brokers to one vendor.

Along with feedback on the two models, GSA’s RFI requests information on commercial technical capabilities to provide an exchange like Connect.gov, and the business or pricing models it could use.

Responses are due by June 19.

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Agencies, Commerce Department, Cybersecurity, Departments, General Services Administration (GSA), identity and access management, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Tech, United States Postal Service (USPS)
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