Axalto Releases Range of PIV Smart ID Cards for Federal Market

May 5, 2006
Large capacity card provides storage for additional apps and legacy support for physical access

CardTech/SecurTech 2006, SAN FRANCISCO - Axalto (, the world's leading provider of microprocessor cards (Gartner 2005), today announced its comprehensive range of dual interface Personal Identification Verification (PIV) cards. The latest Axalto PIV technology fully addresses the requirements mandated by Homeland Presidential Security Directive 12 for U.S. federal government employee identity cards, as defined by Federal Information Processing Standard 201 (FIPS 201).

Axalto's latest dual interface PIV smart cards combine in one smart card chip a secure contact interface along with a secure contactless radio frequency interface. These two interfaces provide a choice in the way a credential can be used, giving agencies greater flexibility to integrate with both physical and logical access systems. Axalto's dual interface technology also simplifies card issuance and card management processes by maintaining only one credential in the smart card chip.

"When implementing this critical national security initiative, federal agencies and departments will want a partner they know they can trust," said Neville Pattinson, director of public sector business development and technology for Axalto. "Our outstanding track record was built up over several years, with over nine million smart ID cards delivered and shipped securely to many U.S. government agencies to date. Our industry leading experience with the Department of Defense Common Access Card and other prominent U.S. smart card programs shows all agencies they can turn to Axalto with confidence."

Axalto's PIV implementation meets all of the requirements of the recently solidified standards, and incorporates the latest security advances in microprocessor card technology. The large, 128 Kbytes storage in the Axalto dual interface PIV card leads the market. It is ample for many additional uses of the cards beyond PIV, including as a PKI badge for IT infrastructures, email and hard drive encryption, training profiles and medical information. Axalto will also offer a 64 Kbytes version in its comprehensive range of dual-interface PIV cards. Presenting a comprehensive range of PIV cards allows customers to select the one that is most cost effective and appropriate for their credentialing needs.

Looking to support the government's installed base of HID PROX physical access systems, Axalto's PIV cards may optionally provide legacy support for these systems beyond that of the FIPS 201 requirements. Axalto and HID recognize the importance of not stranding existing physical access assets and by partnering together are providing a smooth transition plan for migrating to PIV compliance over time.

"Understanding the extensive installed base of HID PROX within physical access systems located in many U.S. government facilities, HID and Axalto worked together to ensure these assets were not stranded," said Eric Widlitz, manager, Government & Technology Applications for HID Global. "Armed with a single smart card platform that supports both Axalto's dual interface PIV and HID PROX, our customers can plan their migration over time, taking advantage of existing installations immediately."

The high security printing techniques required in FIPS 201 are also available from Axalto. From its secure card manufacturing, personalization and printing facility in Owings Mills, a suburb of Baltimore, Axalto already ships high security ID credentials to numerous U.S. government locations around the world.