Microsoft and five other vendors recently demonstrated interoperability of their software based on the WS-Federation specification that enables enterprises to exchange identities and authentication information to customers, partners and suppliers.
WS-Federation extends single sign-on across domains to multiple applications and environments that support the spec. The vendors demonstrated interoperability with the spec by passing an identity between six fictitious portals.
"Specifications like WS-Federation help reduce the challenge of making resources more secure and readily available to internal and external entities across the company's extended business network," said Bob Worner, vice president of engineering, OpenNetwork in a statement. "The specification not only enables companies to allow trusted business partners to access their internal applications, but also furthers companies' ability to deploy secure, interoperable Web services."
WS-Federation helps business by eliminating the need for partnering companies to adopt the same identity management platform in order to ensure compatibility. The specification also helps to lower the cost of delivering services and improve the end user experience by linking accounts across disparate security domains.