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Federated Identity Management

Through CANARIE’s Federated Identity Management (FIM) service, students, faculty and researchers from participating institutions can use their home institution credentials to access a growing number of online services and resources across Canada and around the world.


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The Federated Identity Management (FIM) service, operated by CANARIE through the Canadian Access Federation, provides a secure and privacy-preserving trust fabric for research and higher education institutions and their service provider partners. Students and researchers from participating institutions can use their home institution credentials to access a growing number of online services and resources (like research databases and library journals) via the FIM service.

The FIM service is extended internationally through CAF’s participation in eduGAIN, which enables Canadian users to access services hosted internationally eduGAIN.

How Federated Identity Management Works

When a user tries to access a protected online service, the service redirects the log on request to the user’s home institution. The home institution validates the user and passes the user’s information back to the protected online service safely and securely. Based on the information received, the service will allow or deny the user access to the service’s resources.

CAF is part of eduGAIN, which provides single-sign-on for resources in Europe and elsewhere.

Making it Easy for Community Colleges

CAF supports your users with easy, secure access, and we also make it easy to get started, thanks to the new IdP Installer. The IdP Installer auto-installs and configures the software needed on a client-provided virtual machine to connect your institution’s identity management system to the FIM service. All of this means fewer steps for you, and an established process that simplifies deployment by minimizing your investment of time and IT resources.

Additional Resources

Fact Sheet: Canadian Access Federation
Case Study: ECN (Federated Identity Management)
Case Study: LIGO (Federated Identity Management)

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