Many public-facing federal websites require users to create login accounts for access. Not only is there little consistency between the thousands of existing login systems, these differences touch on all aspects of the service, from ease of use to security. Maintaining multiple user accounts exposes users to greater risk, increases government spending, and creates a negative user experience. Many agencies are additionally constrained in the services they can offer online due to a lack of secure identity proofing.
USDS and the General Service Administration’s 18F have been building a common identity platform, known as login.gov, to improve and secure the experience of interacting with government online. The two groups teamed up with technologists from across the federal government to take advantage of previous efforts toward this goal. Login.gov has been built to make accessing government benefits and services easier, faster, and more secure.
GSA successfully deployed login.gov in April 2017. Login.gov safeguards user data through mandatory two-factor authentication and account recovery services. In addition, USDS and 18F developers work with private sector companies on an ongoing basis to adhere to constantly emerging standards in privacy-protecting authentication. Login.gov is built using the most modern technologies, ensuring that developers can incorporate the solution into existing systems within hours rather than weeks.
In May 2017, the login.gov team successfully engaged with Customs and Border Protection at the Department of Homeland Security, which became the first agency to use login.gov for its public-facing recruitment website. The Social Security Administration, Department of Education, and Railroad Retirement Board have also signed MOUs to be the next users to integrate login.gov services for their users throughout 2017 and early 2018.
Looking forward, login.gov estimates that the federal government has the potential for significant savings by consolidating consumer identity under login.gov, while improving access and usability for each and every American. GSA is partnering with agency Chief Financial Officers to estimate consumer identity costs across the federal government to document the full potential return on investment for this initiative.