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Introduction

Welcome to the in-progress site for the Federal ICAM Enterprise Architecture! This page is your first stop for learning about FICAM, understanding the FICAM Enterprise Architecture, and contributing to its development.

What is ICAM?

ICAM - Identity, Credential, and Access Management - is the set of security disciplines that allows an organization to:

enable the right individual to access the right resource at the right time for the right reason

It is the tools, policies, and systems that allow an organization to manage, monitor, and secure access to protected resources. These resources may be electronic files, computer systems, or physical resources such as server rooms and buildings. The image below depicts a conceptual view of ICAM:

Conceptual Diagram

What is FICAM?

FICAM is the Federal Government’s implementation of Identity, Credential, and Access Management. It is meant to provide a common set of ICAM standards, best practices, and implementation guidance for Federal agencies.

See Goals & Objectives for more information on the goals of FICAM.

What is the FICAM Architecture?

An enterprise architecture is a conceptual blueprint that defines what an organization is and does. This “blueprint” uses principles and practices to define an approach for an organization to design, plan, and execute a strategy.

The FICAM Architecture is the Federal Government’s approach for designing, planning for, and implementing ICAM. It depicts principles and practices in the form of diagrams and stories to describe what ICAM is, what it should do, and what is used to provide capabilities to an agency. While the FICAM Architecture provides a common, government-wide view of ICAM, flexibility in the design exists to allow agencies to use it no matter how unique their implementation environment is.

The FICAM Architecture provides several different views of ICAM, including high level concepts and goals, definition of the business environment, including services and processes, and a view of technology that enables the business. Each element of the FICAM Architecture aligns with one of the six sub-architecture domains described in the Common Approach to Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA):

Architecture Summary

Who is the FICAM Architecture for, and how should Federal agencies use it?

The Architecture is meant as a robust, scalable framework, equally useful to enterprise architects developing their agency’s ICAM program and to those new to ICAM who are learning its core concepts.

Those who are learning about ICAM should start by reviewing the Architecture from top to bottom – it has been developed to allow those with little ICAM experience to quickly come away with a baseline understanding of what ICAM is and how it impacts their organization.

Enterprise architects seasoned in ICAM will want to compare their agency’s ICAM program to the principles and elements laid out within the Architecture. This comparison may help them identify areas where their agency’s ICAM program is underdeveloped and help them plan for future expansion and improvement.

In general, Federal agencies and departments should look to the FICAM Architecture as a guide to help them establish a baseline understanding of the Federal approach to ICAM and as a tool to help them improve their ICAM implementations.

What is this site, and where do I go from here?

This site has two purposes:

  • To provide an authoritative location where anyone can access the most up-to-date version of the FICAM Architecture, and
  • To serve as a collaborative space where subject matter experts and members of the ICAM Community can work to revise and refine the Architecture over time.

If you are new to the FICAM Architecture, it is a good idea to start at the top of the menu on the left with the Conceptual Diagram and work downwards through the various elements of the Architecture.

If you’re looking to contribute a new idea or suggest a revision to the existing Architecture documents, click the “Contribute” tab at the bottom left to learn how.