The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) recently
awarded a $93 million task order to Maximus, Inc, Reston, Va.,
to assist NASA in developing a state-of-the-art smart card for
agency employees and contractors to access facilities and
information systems.

NASA is spearheading this government pilot program, which has
been in the planning stages for 2 years with the National
Institute of Standards and Technology and a working group of
the federal government Interagency Advisory Board. GSA awarded
the task order on Jan. 8, 2004, through its Smart Access Common
ID Contract managed by the Federal Technology Service’s (FTS)
Center for Smart Card Solutions.

The "One NASA" smart card will enhance physical security for
NASA facilities by authenticating an individual’s identity and
provide a higher level of identity assurance for the agency’s
information technology systems.

"NASA plans to run a small field trial in May at its Marshall
Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. If that is successful,
the trial will be expanded to 2,000 employees," said NASA’s
David Saleeba, Assistant Administrator for Security Management
and Safeguards. "If the field trials are successful, and we
receive the approval of the Office of Management and Budget, we
plan to deploy over 100,000 smart cards before the end of the
2005 fiscal year," he said.

GSA’s FTS is providing NASA with cradle-to-grave services on
this task order including card management, enrollment, and
logical and physical access capabilities," said FTS
Commissioner Sandra Bates. "We look forward to working with
NASA on this smart card deployment."

With the "One NASA" smart card, employees and contractors need
only to swipe it across a reader to access a NASA center or
facility. Similarly, using the same card to access their
personal computers will increase computer security. Cardholders
need only to insert their card into a desktop reader at their