MEEC has entered into an agreement with InCommon. InCommon (www.incommon.org), operated by Internet2, provides for shared management of access to online resource for the U.S. education and research communities. All participants have common policies and technology, allowing identity providers to control the release of user information, and service providers to manage the authorization for their online resources. The result is a secure and privacy-protecting method for providing individuals with single sign-on access to protected or licensed online resources.
This process of federated identity management greatly streamlines collaboration because participants agree on these policies and processes once, rather than each time they sign a contract with a new partner. It also improves security and privacy, as the identity provider releases only the information needed for the service provider to make an access decision. Many times, this does not require the release of even an individual’s name or other personally identifiable information.
In addition, the InCommon Certificate Service offers unlimited server and personal certificates to higher education participants for one low annual fee.
InCommon now serves almost 300 higher education institutions, research organizations, and sponsored partners; and is piloting K-12 participation with several groups in North Carolina.