19 Jul 2016
 

SWITCH report on IdM solutions

SWITCH is a neutral technology and service platform for the Swiss universities that coordinates and performs special tasks in several ICT fields: security, identity, networks, Internet, software procurement, cloud services, e-learning and video management. Its services are designed and developed in close collaboration with the universities.

SWITCH is currently involved in the realization of the Swiss edu-ID identity platform, evolution of its SWITCHaai, the current Authentication and Authorization Infrastructure for the Swiss universities.

As part of such process, SWITCH started a Request For Information (RFI) to gain an overview of Identity Management solutions, including Open Source, on the market that may fit Swiss edu-ID requirements.

The report of the RFI results is now publicly available and, besides demonstrating SWITCH's objective, careful and professional approach, shows some worth noting facts:

  1. There is no clear single winning product identified
  2. The evaluation team has agreed to further investigate Apache Syncope together with the integrator and main contributor Tirasa
  3. The evaluation team recommends to build a clearly scoped prototype based on Apache Syncope that implements the functions of the currently operational Swiss edu-ID infrastructure and a number of additional use cases
  4. Tirasa did compete with software giants - as CA, Dell, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP - niche players - as Sailpoint, Okta, OneLogin, ForgeRock, OpenIAM - and other open source actors, as Evolveum
  5. Tirasa was recognized as "small company, but with strategic focus", despite being one of the very few without office in Switzerland
  6. Ability of proving references in universities and capability of integrating with pre-existing open source technologies as Shibboleth were considered key-factors for ranking

By experience, selecting the reference IdM platform for a very complex and structured project as Swiss edu-ID can be hardly performed on paper: the decision of moving forward with a prototype looks then very wise.

Furthermore, we really appreciate the value and significance attributed by the SWITCH team to the open source model, which brings to the table several aspects - as collaboration, roadmap influence and mutual improvement - that vendors simply are not able to handle.

Tirasa is extremely proud of this recognition and promise to work hard, first for making the prototype successful then for helping SWITCH implement the best Identity and Access Management platform for the Swiss universities.

       

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