Terry Halvorsen, former Department of Defense CIO & executive vice president of IT & Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics, discusses changes to authentication tech at the Pentagon, and how it could move to civilian agencies in the future.
The Defense Information Systems Agency is experimenting with new technologies to replace or work alongside the 20-year-old Common Access Card. According to Defense Systems, DISA has 75 options on the table. Each possible CAC replacement uses sensors to identify users by their attributes, such as how they walk or hold the device. Terry Halvorsen, former Defense Department CIO & executive vice president of IT & Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics, started this process two years ago, and believes that new technology could eliminate both military and civilian versions of the CAC. “I think with today’s technology it is really easy for me to secure your identity through the normal processes– the way you sign in, the way you look at your machine, the picture, fingerprint, other bio‑factors. Personal traits that you use. We know these things are very good signatures of who you are,” said Halvorsen. “All of those things can be done in the matter of a normal, starting up your computer, starting your day, starting your work without having to put a card in… The CAC is secure as long as you have it… it eliminates another physical weakness in the system.”