Federal agencies will soon be required to buy only networking and IT products that meet specific Internet protocol version 6 compliance requirements as recommended by the Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology. The requirements include product testing in an accredited third-party laboratory.
The goal of the National Institute of Standards and Technology's (NIST) USGv6 testing program is to ensure interoperability among all IT and networking components used to build, maintain and secure the IT infrastructure of federal agencies.
USGv6 Testing Program Tips
As an accredited third-party testing facility, ICSA Labs offers the following tips and guidance for vendors seeking to deliver USGv6-compliant products:
- Thoroughly review the USGv6 Testing Program User's Guide, which explains all of the requirements and procedures.
- Federal agencies can procure IPv6 hardware and software only if it adheres to USGv6 Testing Program guidelines, as well as the individual agency's network architecture requirements.
- IT suppliers should not assume their IPv6 products meet USGv6 Testing Program guidelines. These products must be evaluated by an accredited third-party test laboratory.
- Any product that contains an IPv6 component must be tested, including operating systems, routers, switches, firewalls, intrusion prevention and detection devices, Web application firewalls and unified threat management devices, as well as network-connected devices such as printers and fax machines.
"With the compliance deadline just a few months away, vendors that have not had their IPv6 products tested should start the process immediately," said Guy Snyder, secure communications program manager, ICSA Labs. "As the first of two testing labs accredited under the USGv6 testing program managed by NIST, we can help product vendors fulfill this requirement."
Moving to IPv6
In August 2005, the Office of Management and Budget directed NIST to develop a technical infrastructure of standards and testing necessary to support wide-scale adoption of IPv6 in U.S. government agencies, resulting in the USGv6 Testing Program.
NIST worked with several test labs and developers including ICSA Labs to create this program, which provides a procurement path for vendors to sell their products to the U.S. government. ICSA Labs became the first third-party laboratory accredited to test USGv6 product capabilities.
About ICSA Labs
ICSA Labs, an independent division of Verizon Business, offers vendor-neutral testing and certification of security products. Many of the world's top security vendors submit their products for testing and certification at ICSA Labs. Businesses rely on ICSA Labs to authoritatively set and apply objective testing and certification criteria for measuring product compliance and reliability. For more information about ICSA Labs, please visit: http://www.icsalabs.com.
About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ), is a global leader in communications and IT solutions. We combine professional expertise with one of the world's most connected IP networks to deliver award-winning communications, IT, information security and network solutions. We securely connect today's extended enterprises of widespread and mobile customers, partners, suppliers and employees - enabling them to increase productivity and efficiency and help preserve the environment. Many of the world's largest businesses and governments - including 96 percent of the Fortune 1000 and thousands of government agencies and educational institutions - rely on our professional and managed services and network technologies to accelerate their business. Find out more at www.verizonbusiness.com.