Compliance Management, Network Security

Mnuchin hails FIDO authentication standards

Speaking at the Federal Identity Forum & Exposition, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin hailed FIDO authentication standards

“We've seen great innovations through public-private partnerships like the emergence of FIDO authentication – where major firms in IT, software, device manufacturers, banking, health care and security have partnered with government (NIST in particular) to deliver on this vision,” said Mnuchin, who called identity “the rails that financial services runs on” and solving it “key to enabling financial inclusion and to banking the unbanked.”

He noted that "with these commitments from industry, we're at the point where it will be hard for a consumer to buy a device or launch a browser that doesn't support strong authentication out of the box.  It's an innovation – driven by industry and supported by government – that is improving security and transforming digital commerce.”

Mnuchin's remarks drew praise from Brett McDowell, executive director of the FIDO Alliance, which has created an open standards-based approach for authentication. “I applaud Secretary Mnuchin and the administration for recognizing the role, responsibility and opportunity for industry, and in particular the FIDO Alliance and FIDO standards, to play in improving the identity ecosystem and the overall security of American citizens,” said McDowell. “The Secretary's references to the importance of NSTIC, launched by the previous administration, is a good example of how the administration views government as playing a supporting role to private sector innovation.”

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