The MIT Kerberos Consortium, a security authentication and authorization group, announced Monday that Microsoft has joined its shindig.
The consortium, which launched in September with Google, Apple, Sun Microsystems and a collection of universities, noted Microsoft is coming aboard as a founding sponsor.
Kerberos aims to offer consumers the same single sign-on authentication and authorization system that corporate America has been using to allow employees to access network services with one log-on. Kerberos is an offshoot of MIT's Project Athena, which was developed back in the 1980s.
Microsoft uses the Kerberos network authentication protocol in such products as its Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008. And Kerberos also serves as the main authentication tool in Microsoft's Active Directory.
"Microsoft joining the Kerberos Consortium is significant," Stephen Buckley, consortium executive director, said in a statement. "They represent a vast number of users of Kerberos. It is an important step forward towards our common ambition to create a universal authentication platform for the world's computer networks."