Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Personal Identity Verification (PIV)

Close to 5 million PIV Cards today provide multifactor authentication to federal IT resources and facilities. The Standard behind these PIV Cards is Federal Information Processing Standard 201 (FIPS 201) titled Personal Identity Verification of Federal Employees and Contractors.  FIPS 201 covers identity proofing and enrollment activities to issue a PIV Card as well as lifecycle activities to update, use and maintain the PIV Card.  FIPS 201 is supported by several associated Special Publications (SPs) to provide technical details to facilitate interagency use of the card. Since initial publication in 2005, the Standard has gone through two revision – each addressing:

  1. lessons-learned from federal stakeholders and industry,
  2. adaptations to changes in the environment/technology and
  3. alignment to federal policy.

Today, the Standard is complemented by additional authenticators (i.e., Derived PIV Credentials) targeted for mobile devices that lack support for smart cards.  Expansion of Derived PIV Credentials to other platforms is forthcoming with Revision 3 of FIPS 201. See PIV Project for further information about FIPS 201 and its associated Special Publication.

Roadmap: FIPS 201 Personal Identity Verification (PIV)

Created January 27, 2020, Updated April 5, 2022