National AAAI (Authentication, Authorisation and Accounting Infrastructure) pathfinder project

The National AAAI (Authentication, Authorisation and Accounting Infrastructure) project carries out pilot projects to demonstrate the proposed access and resource management infrastructure works in several common research settings, especially in areas where data must be securely accessed, stored and transported.

The pilot projects will integrate two key existing Authentication, Authorisation and Accounting Infrastructure (AAAI) technologies: Assent and SAFE. The Authentication Service Assent is already in service at a number of institutions. The associated Safe Share project is deploying additional authentication as well as a Higher Assurance Network, at Farr Institute (London, HeRC, Wales, and Scotland) and the Administrative Data Research Network sites where additional security is required to handle person-identifiable data. The Authorisation and Accounting service SAFE is currently used by ARCHER, DiRAC and the Hartree Centre.

This pathfinder initiative pilots the integration of these capabilities as a significant step towards implementing a coherent National Authentication, Authorisation and Accounting Infrastructure that serves the needs of UK and international research collaborations.

EPCC's role

EPCC plays a leading role in the project through its SAFE accounting system.

We will integrate SAFE with Assent and provide a fall-back ID Provider for users whose organisation does not offer one, notably industrial (and also some academic) users. We will work with eMedLab to enrich SAFE as per their requirements and we will demonstrate integration of the SAFE with the ARC HPC service. We will also pilot the issuance of SAML assertions from SAFE and their consumption by the GridPP consortium.

Further information

National AAAI is funded by STFC with contributions from all the UK Research Councils and Jisc, and involves the following partners: DiRAC (STFC and Durham), N8 (Leeds), ARC (Oxford), eMedlab (Crick), JISC and EPCC. It is led by UCL.

 The project will run from 1 September 2016 to 30 June 2017