Jisc has operated the UK Access Management Federation for over 10 years, developing considerable knowledge, expertise, and infrastructure. Other NRENs and knowledge communities want to provide similar identity federation services for their users, but it can be complex and expensive. This solution greatly reduces the cost and difficulty of provision.
Background to the project
An identity federation (“federation”) enables users, such as students and staff, to enjoy single sign-on access to their online services.
Users benefit from simple, secure, and more personalised access to and use of services. Institutions and services benefit from enhanced access management for users and simplified compliance with data protection regulation, such as the GDPR.
The UK Access Management Federation is the largest of its kind in the world. The service, which connects hundreds of services worldwide, enjoys 100% and 90% adoption by our higher and further education sectors respectively. In recent years we have established a world-leading position in the field of federation services, in terms of our scale, expertise, and technology.
What we're doing
We are making our capabilities available to other national research and education networks (NRENs) and knowledge communities, enabling them to offer their own users a world-class federation. Our service will:
- Provide a robust, secure, and globally accessible and available infrastructure that provides the full range of technical capabilities needed to offer, easily and cost-effectively, a federation service
- Maintain the technical infrastructure in a condition appropriate for production use, and develop it so that it remains fit for purpose, and also provide technical support on its use
There are two groups of target user:
- NRENs that already have a federation and are exploring alternative forms of provision to obtain more advanced functionality and achieve greater cost efficiency
- NRENs and other knowledge communities that do not currently have a federation, and lack the skills or resources to deploy and maintain one
In providing this solution, we want to make federation as widely accessible as possible, and so grow the numbers of users and service providers connected to a federation. This in turn will enhance the value of our own federation towards Jisc's members.
How we'll do it
We will operate and manage the infrastructure needed to operate a federation on behalf of the service’s customers comprising of:
- A cloud-based tenant federation, providing all the infrastructure needed to operate a federation
- Access to a web portal, enabling the customer to manage their tenant federation
- Structured technical support to customers for their tenant from Jisc
A simple, annual tariff for use of the service will apply.
Find out more
For more information, contact Justin Knight, project manager.