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New Badge System to be Instituted Throughout Federal Government

Glenn begins the process of implementing a new badge system this month that will enhance security, increase government efficiency, reduce identity fraud and protect personal privacy.

The new badge system is in response to Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 (HSPD-12), a presidential directive that requires federal agencies to implement a mandatory, governmentwide standard for secure and reliable forms of identification for their federal employees and contractors. Every federal employee and contractor will be affected. More specifically, anyone who works or visits NASA centers will see changes.

Security personnel train on badging system. Credit: Doreen B. Zudell (SGTI)Image right: Amanda Anderson (SSI), Phil Oberhaus (KPSI) and Ron Jurgen (SSI), Security Management and Safeguards Office, test equipment to be used in new badging process. Credit: NASA/Doreen B. Zudell

"NASA Headquarters and each center have established teams to implement the HSPD-12 requirements and the accompanying standards, policies and guidelines," explained Glenn's HSPD–12 Implementation Manager Les Farkas, Office of the Chief Information Officer. "A team consisting of representatives from the various directorates within Glenn is collaborating to implement this process locally."

The new badge system will come in the form of a "smartcard" badge, which will allow physical and information technology access to Glenn and all other NASA centers and federal agencies. The smartcard will be equipped with a computer chip that stores and protects certain identity information about an individual.

Rebadging is a two-part process that requires two visits to rebadging stations in the Development Engineering Building Annex. The first "enrollment" visit requires employees to present two forms of identification. During this visit, a processor will take a photograph, scan fingerprints and obtain the signature of the applicant. After the credentials have been secured, an approval process takes place to verify the credentials. Applicants receive their smartcard during the second "finalization" visit and will be instructed on its usage.

"The enrollment visit is the most extensive and could take up to 20 minutes to complete," explained Badging Coordinator Linda McMillen, Enterprise Environments Branch. "Employees will need to bring two forms of identification, such as a driver's license, passport, social security card or certified birth certificate. A full list of approved documents will be provided to employees prior to their scheduled enrollment visit. Current NASA badges cannot be used for identification."

Glenn's Desktop Integration Group is developing hardware and software for a smartcard reader that will be used agencywide. ODIN will deploy smartcard readers throughout Glenn during the coming months, with completion expected before the end of the calendar year.

"In addition to the security aspect, the smartcard will eventually serve as the sole credential federal badge, eliminating the need for various passwords," Farkas said.

The background investigation and new smartcard badge are requirements to continue work for the federal government, effective October 27, 2007. Access to the center can be denied if employees do not meet these requirements. Lewis Field and Plum Brook Station employees will receive notices from the HSPD-12 team with specific instructions on enrollment throughout the coming months.

Ongoing activities regarding this effort can be located at http://hspd12.nasa.gov/ (internal only). Please direct all questions regarding HSPD-12 to Farkas at 216-433-5235 or by email at Les.G.Farkas@nasa.gov.

Editor's Note: The AeroSpace Frontiers will be publishing articles on other important aspects of the HSPD-12 in upcoming issues.

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By Doreen B. Zudell