Using Identity Manager and Access Manager™ as the key technical components, Etnic has successfully consolidated all aspects of identity and access management and control to a centralised infrastructure.

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"Thanks to the NetIQ (now a part of Micro Focus) solutions, we now have full control over the lifecycle of user accounts.”Laurent ServaisCerberus Project Manager, Etnic

About Etnic

Etnic was founded in 2002 to provide IT services to the Wallonia-Brussels Federation—the institution responsible for providing public services in the French-speaking part of Belgium.

With a customer base that spans a broad spectrum of civic services, Etnic manages a very diverse set of users, including citizens and employees of partner agencies. These users may also have different profiles depending on context; for example, whether as a private individual or in a professional capacity.


As user numbers grew, Etnic struggled to manage identity and access rights across numerous applications. The organization embarked on a four-year project, called “Cerberus,” to create a centralized user and access management solution capable of providing complete control and visibility throughout the full user lifecycle and related access rights to IT resources.

Etnic wanted to improve its internal efficiency by automating tasks such as the deletion of access rights belonging to departing government employees. For regulatory reasons, Etnic also needed to enable user auditability by providing a clear view of current and past access rights for all users.

Our Solution

“Based on the availability of connectors, the quality of documentation, the ease of management and the strength of its references, it was clear that NetIQ was the best of the vendors we considered,” said Laurent Servais, Cerberus Project Manager at Etnic. “Etnic has only two dedicated people managing tens of thousands of identities. Identity Manager and Access Manager provide the highly automated and easy-to-manage infrastructure we need to make that possible.”

Etnic deployed Identity Manager and Access Manager to consolidate identity and access management to a single repository. The solution also provides self-service tools that allow Etnic’s customers to manage their own users and access rights within the framework of a management delegation process.

Etnic organizes its user accounts into “populations,” each of which represents a particular interaction scenario. For example, citizens using e-government services are placed in a different population from employees using a departmental application. To ensure compliance and allow granular user management, Etnic uses Identity Manager to keep these groups of users completely segregated.

All four million French-speaking Belgians could ultimately have an e-government account in Identity Manager. Some e-government services are already in production, including solutions for education grants, arts subsidies and teaching job applications.

Students, artists or teachers can fill out online forms after authenticating themselves (using their electronic identity cards) through a portal powered by Access Manager. Identity Manager handles the back-end integration of identities across different applications, ensuring that each user need only create a single account for use across all services within a given context.

“For an innovative project like this, you need a partner who can translate strong concepts into technical solutions,” said Servais. “We worked with OPNS, who have excellent skills and long experience in identity management projects, as well as a comprehensive understanding of the NetIQ technologies.”


“In the past, when a new employee joined one of our customers, it took several weeks to give them all the necessary access rights for their role,” said Servais. “Now, as soon as they are registered in the HR system, Identity Manager automatically creates their account and access rights based on their role in the organization.”

With our solutions in place, non- technical staff at Etnic’s customers can quickly and easily manage identities and access rights. These self-service capabilities minimize their need to call on experts at Etnic, accelerating processes and reducing costs on both sides.

The pooling of identities in our solution enables the secure reuse of credentials across multiple systems. Citizens who have registered for one e-government service can sign up for others using their existing account, saving time and effort.

“Thanks to the NetIQ solutions, the full lifecycle of users on our systems is now under control,” said Servais. “By automatically deleting access rights when no longer required, we are limiting the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive data.”

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  • Enables the secure reuse of credentials across multiple systems
  • Limits the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive data

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