HID Global Launches Crescendo Series of Smart Cards

Cards designed to offer lowest total cost of ownership for converged access control


RSA Conference 2007, SAN FRANCISCO--HID Global, a leading manufacturer in the access control industry, today announced the launch of its Crescendo series smart cards designed to provide out-of-the box, standards-compliant support for thousands of logical access control applications. Within HID’s Trusted Identity Platform, Crescendo is an off-the-shelf smart card that can be easily and cost-effectively deployed for both logical and physical access control and other secure identity-related applications.

Crescendo supports Microsoft Identity Lifecycle Manager 2007 (ILM 2007) and the Windows Smart Card Framework, enabling organizations to cost-effectively and efficiently deploy, configure, manage, maintain, and audit smart card-based infrastructures. As organizations realize that user names and passwords may not be strong enough to maintain their required level of logical access security, the use of smart cards in conjunction with ILM 2007 will be an ideal solution to increase security by employing strong, multi-factor authentication technology.

To meet the growing demand for a single card for logical and physical access control, Crescendo smart cards incorporate HID’s industry standard proximity technology (HID or Indala), iCLASS, and other 13.56 MHz contactless smart card technologies used for secure, convenient physical access control. Crescendo cards can be customized with the user’s choice of physical access control technologies and also personalized with employee name, photo, and other identification information.

"For the first time, end-users will have the opportunity to choose a single card for logical and physical access control that is readily available, easily deployed, and cost-effective," said Debra Spitler, HID Global’s executive vice president of HID Connect. "HID Global’s Trusted Identity Platform is designed to combine technologies, services, and know-how with unique attributes such that HID can deliver a trusted solution for secure identity-related applications. Crescendo is just one example of how HID can help end-users in all aspects of secure credentialing."

Crescendo series off-the-shelf smart cards are unique in the market for several reasons:

There is no additional per-seat middleware license. Crescendo is supplied pre-initialized with the required on-card software and includes all required drivers and middleware.

In addition to supporting ILM 2007, Crescendo series smart cards are fully compatible with the Microsoft Windows Smart Card Framework and support scenarios such as Windows Domain logon, VPN, Microsoft Office Outlook, secure Web access, and wireless LAN authentication. Security applications from other vendors, including single sign-on, pre-boot authentication, disk encryption, and digital signatures, are also supported.

The card is designed to work with existing physical access control systems that may incorporate many different types of magnetic stripe, proximity, or contactless 13.56 MHz smart card technologies.

"Customers have told us they are seeking a single smart card to manage both logical and physical access control applications," said Peter Houston, senior director of Marketing for Identity and Access at Microsoft Corp. “By working with us on Identity Lifecycle Manager 2007, HID will enable customers to effectively deploy and maintain solutions for strong authentication through its Crescendo series smart cards, and combine these solutions for logical access control with solutions for physical access control."

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