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atsec information security accredited to perform TWIC reader evaluations


atsec information security, a global and independent, standards-based information technology security services company, is now an accredited testing lab for TWIC card readers, to test TWIC readers against the requirements set forth by the TWIC Reader Evaluation Program.

TWIC stands for “Transport Worker identity credentials” and is a system-wide federal common credential for gaining unescorted access to port facilities.

Federal agencies including the Coast Guard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), as well as local and state authorities, have been tasked with port security. Most of the focus is on cargo, crew and passenger inspection. Container shipping involves multiple layers of workers, so the risk is higher for terrorist or criminal infiltration.

The TWIC program provides a tamper-resistant biometric credential to maritime workers that need unescorted access to secure areas of port facilities and ships regulated under the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002.

What atsec will be testing, as explained in the press release, works like this:

“With over 2.1 million TWICs in the field the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has launched a program to qualify card reader conformance to the TWIC Reader Hardware and Card Application Specification (dated May 2008). Readers determined to be conformant to TSA TWIC Reader requirements will be placed on a Qualified Technology List (QTL) maintained and made available to the public by TSA. QTL qualification requirements vary by reader type and claimed features of the vendor. All functional reader testing for the new QTL program will be performed by a National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) accredited laboratory. Reader conformance with TWIC environmental specifications, such as temperature range, humidity, shock and vibration, will require the vendor to supply to TSA certificates of conformance for all mandatory environmental requirements and any additional environmental qualifications.”

This adds to atsec’s range of testing capabilities including NIST‘s Personal Identity Verification Program, the GSA Personal Identity Verification Evaluation (FIPS 201), and more.

Visit atsec’s web site to learn more about TWIC and atsec’s services.

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