Federal Identity, Credential, and Access Management (FICAM) is a framework and set of guidelines established by the U.S. federal government to manage and secure digital identities, credentials, and access to information systems and resources. FICAM was developed to address the challenges of identity management across various federal agencies and to promote interoperability and standardization in identity and access management practices.

The primary objectives of FICAM are as follows:

  1. Identity Management: FICAM provides a comprehensive approach to managing digital identities for individuals, systems, and devices within federal agencies. This involves defining identity proofing and verification processes to ensure that individuals are accurately identified and authenticated before granting access to resources.
  2. Credentialing: FICAM establishes guidelines for issuing secure and standardized credentials, such as Personal Identity Verification (PIV) cards, to federal employees and contractors. These credentials contain identity information and may include biometric data, making them more resistant to fraud and misuse.
  3. Access Management: FICAM aims to improve access control measures, ensuring that individuals have the appropriate level of access to federal resources based on their roles and responsibilities. This involves implementing identity-based access controls and enforcing the principle of least privilege.
  4. Interoperability: FICAM promotes interoperability and the ability to share identity information securely across different federal agencies. This allows for streamlined collaboration and information exchange while maintaining strong security measures.
  5. Privacy and Security: FICAM emphasizes the importance of protecting individuals’ privacy and securing sensitive information. It outlines measures to safeguard personal data and prevent unauthorized access.
  6. Cost Efficiency: By standardizing identity and access management practices, FICAM aims to reduce duplication of efforts and save costs associated with managing separate identity systems within federal agencies.

The implementation of FICAM involves collaboration among various federal entities, including the General Services Administration (GSA), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and others. These entities work together to develop policies, guidelines, and technical standards that align with FICAM principles.

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