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Vol. LX, No. 20
October 3, 2008

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New NED System Debuts Oct. 6

NIH will activate the new NIH Enterprise Directory (NED 2.0) on Oct. 6; it is the authoritative source for identity management at NIH. NED was launched in 2000 to provide users with a convenient central repository to find information about people who work at NIH. Since then, NED has provided a framework for supporting new business processes across NIH; its developers have continued to improve its integration with enterprise initiatives here.

The NED upgrades will play a central role in NIH’s compliance with Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12 (HSPD-12)—the mandate to establish a standardized, government-wide credentialing and security program. It calls for NIH to implement a Personal Identity Verification (PIV) process to help determine the suitability of employees, contractors and affiliates to work at NIH. The process also establishes an individual’s eligibility to receive the new HHS ID badge and be granted access to NIH facilities and information systems. Only after individuals are registered in the new NED will they be able to proceed with their background checks and receive their HHS ID badges (PIV cards).

Today, all new employees, contractors and affiliates as well as individuals whose current ID badges are expiring are screened through the PIV process. Also, within the next few months, NIH will begin issuing the new smart HHS ID badges (PIV cards) to these same groups. Eventually all employees, contractors and affiliates will be processed through PIV and will be issued the new badges.

Rollout Requires Training, Coordination

“Enhancing NED, creating the new, smart ID badge and integrating these tools into a PIV process that works seamlessly throughout NIH while being compatible with systems across the federal government present countless technical and administrative challenges,” said Richie Taffet, acting director of the Division of Personnel Security and Access Control. DPSAC, within the Office of Research Services, coordinates background investigations and issues ID badges.

“Separately and together these challenges require considerable planning and coordination with our administrative community and our many stakeholders,” he added. “As we bring these projects to fruition, we are making a concerted effort to give our administrative community, particularly the AOs, ATs and lab managers, the tools they’ll need as they prepare to incorporate the new NED into their daily work activities.”

Taffet, along with NED Project Manager Jeff Erickson, spent the summer introducing NIH administrators to HSPD-12 and NED enhancements. First to be trained was a cadre of administrative officers from all of the ICs who earned the designation of “super user” following completion of training. These new experts will serve as the early points of contact within the ICs to assist less experienced administrative staff with the new NED system. The trainers next turned their attention to the pool of AOs, ATs and lab managers who will be shouldering most of the day-to-day PIV responsibilities. Through a series of “hands on” training sessions and town hall meetings, Taffet and Erickson were able to reach over 1,000 NED users.

Admin Community is Key to PIV Success

Over the past year, ORS has published a biweekly e-newsletter, DPSAC News, ( to provide news about HSPD-12, badging and enrollment developments. Anyone may subscribe by emailing Lanny Newman at and requesting that your name be added to the DPSAC News listserv.

More recently, Erickson and his team developed a virtual practice environment, known as the “NED sandbox,” to help NED users prepare for the upcoming launch of the new system. The sandbox lets users explore NED’s enhancements at their own pace.

“Supporting the administrative community will continue to be a priority even after the launch of the new NED,” said Taffet. “During the week of Oct. 6, DPSAC will hold daily teleconference sessions to field questions from the NED-user community and to provide a forum for AOs to share concerns and discuss issues.”

To learn more about NED and the implementation of PIV and the HHS ID badge, visit NIHRecord Icon

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