In an Identity and Access Management BoF side event for the UbuntuNet-Connect 2021, Eko-Konnect Research and Education Initiative introduced BonafID to an audience of African NREN CEO’s, ICT Directors, Campus Network Engineers, and other international stakeholders in the eduID ecosystem.

BonafID is a cloud and on-premise platform solution designed to provide persistent (lifelong) eduID (identity) to a user as he/she progresses through their academic career regardless of institution affiliation enabling secure federated access to educational services. BonafID addresses a major lack of centralised authentication systems facing many institutions, thus minimising the functionality and flexibility of national identity federations to adequately implement federated identity access management with appropriate user groupings and policy implementation.

Owen Iyoha, Eko-Konnect CEO explained that with the fledgling National Identity Federation in Nigeria these challenges became quickly apparent and that the necessary development skills and experience did not necessarily reside within the NRENs. Iyoha described the need for a strong African REN support ecosystem in which formal collaboration and co-sourcing arrangements are established with private sector ICT companies dedicated to providing open technologies with the skills required to build and support the robust infrastructure required to make NREN platforms and services like and sustainable as user adoption increased.

Speaking on BonafID, Mr Iyoha described the history and emergence of Eko-Konnect and its longstanding relationship with Datasphir as an open technology provider and support to Eko-Konnect and how the concept of BonafID emerged from the limitations of eduID. He explained how Datasphir set out to design BonafID and formed a collaboration with Daasi International and Switch to build the BonafID platform.

David Huebner, a Solutions Engineer at DAASI International co-presented the BonafID solution. David introduced his organisation and provided an overview of the features and functionality of BonafID and gave a demonstration of the product.

In closing the presentation, Owen Iyoha appealed to the African audience to join in the collaboration of the BonafID development and pilot use cases as NRENs seek to develop their national identity federations.