Liberty Alliance Outlines Framework to Support Federated Web Services

Blueprint for Secure Web Services Architecture Facilitates Connectivity Across Corporate Boundaries, Drives Business Opportunities Between Trusted Companies

Liberty Alliance, the global consortium developing an open federated identity standard and business tools for implementing identity-based services, today released an overview of its Identity Web Services Framework (ID-WSF) and how it is adapted to general Web services development. Responding to strong industry interest in ID-WSF, released publicly in April 2003 and finalized in November 2003, Liberty Alliance has created this document to help interested parties quickly understand the benefits of Liberty’s web services framework.

Companies today face the business imperative to expand revenue opportunities, and deliver better service and security to customers at a lower cost. Federated, identity-based Web services allow companies to connect their applications with their partners’ or customers’ applications by granting trusted entities access to services and information protected by firewalls. Liberty ID-WSF provides a blueprint for companies to extend their architectures to a federated Web services model, allowing trusted partners, customers and suppliers to access key resources and information across corporate boundaries. Liberty plans to release a technical white paper based on the established ID-WSF framework in Q3 of this year, helping companies more quickly absorb the technical detail already available in the specifications.

“Many companies have already moved their business processes to the web, and successfully implemented Liberty-enabled Identity Management infrastructures,” said Michael Barrett, president of the Liberty Alliance and vice president for privacy and security at American Express. “These companies are ready to leverage this powerful foundation and move aggressively forward with federated Web services. Liberty ID-WSF helps businesses to enrich their current deployments and create significant competitive advantage.”

Currently, there is already significant traction in the adoption of federated identity management projects based on Liberty’s Identity Web Services Framework (ID-WSF), part of the organization’s Phase 2 specifications. AOL, Nokia and Vodafone are among approximately 30 member companies that have announced products and services or plans for products and services based on Liberty specifications.

Under a new arrangement with D-Link, Radio@AOL — the No. 1 Internet radio broadcaster — and You’ve Got Pictures will be available to AOL’s 31.5 million subscribers as well as non-AOL subscribers. Additionally, a prototype developed jointly between AOL and Nokia demonstrates how AOL employs ID-WSF specifications – particularly the authentication, discovery, and permission-based attribute sharing and security features – to enable any consumer to access and personalize the Radio@AOL service using their Nokia mobile handset.

Vodafone, among the world’s largest mobile telecommunications network companies, has collaborated with Trustgenix and GameFederation to build a Liberty-enabled multiplayer mobile gaming proof-of-concept. Using Liberty as the authentication mechanism, a user can discover a game site over Vodafone’s network, access it and personalize his or her experience.

These projects illuminate Liberty ID-WSF’s ability to bridge fixed and mobile Internet services. It also underscores that an identity-aware framework allows communities to provide highly personalized and attractive services while improving the service’s usability. They show how the whole ecosystem supports Web services, including mobile devices.

In a related development, Liberty will be hosting an interoperability demonstration at the Burton Catalyst Conference on July 21 that will highlight three scenarios that show support of Liberty’s Identity Web Services Framework (ID-WSF), and one scenario that shows support for Liberty’s Identity Federation Framework (ID-FF). These scenarios will demonstrate specific utilization of Liberty protocols and will include examples from the financial services, e-government and mobile spaces. More information is available at

About Liberty ID-WSF
The Liberty Identity Web Services Framework (ID-WSF) supports the development of Web services. Web services typically require a number of standard functions, including authentication, security, service discovery, and the communication of service policy. Liberty ID-WSF provides such functionality, allowing the development of secure,
privacy-protected Web services.

About Liberty Alliance Project
The Liberty Alliance Project ( is an alliance of more than 150 companies, non-profit and government organizations from around the globe. The consortium is committed to developing an open standard for federated network identity that supports all current and emerging network devices. Federated identity offers businesses, governments, employees and consumers a more convenient and secure way to control identity information in today’s digital economy, and is a key component in driving the use of e-commerce, personalized data services, as well as web-based services. Membership is open to all commercial and non-commercial organizations.


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