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FIPS 201 Evaluation Program

The Federal Information Processing Standard 201 (FIPS 201) Evaluation Program (sometimes called the FICAM Testing Program) tests and certifies services and commercial products used in PIV credentialing systems, physical access control systems (PACS), and public key infrastructures (PKIs).

Program Announcements

Announcements older than four years are removed. Contact us if you have any questions.

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The GSA FICAM Testing Lab located in Reston, VA will be operating on limited in-person availability from December 20, 2023, through January 2, 2024, and as such will not be scheduling any appointments during that period. Vendors are requested to schedule an appointment by December 15, 2023, so that the lab personnel can make every effort to provide availability and assistance before December 20, 2023.

Your patience is greatly appreciated.
Thank you.



The Testing and Evaluation section has been updated to streamline the process and documentation for the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program. The guidance and application documents required for the Physical Access Control Systems (PACS) evaluation have been updated, and clarification for the Personal Identity Verification and Credentials evaluation process has been added.



As requested by the vendor, the Identiv Velocity (APL #10013) with HID Global Validation System for Hirsch-Identiv Velocity (APL #10014) will be moved to the RPL, effective October 16, 2023



The initial version of the FRTC for PACS Alternative Authenticators, version 1.0 has been published for public review and comments under the Physical Access Control System section.

This document will be continuously updated as emerging technology and standards supporting FICAM compliance become available. Please review the document and provide your comments to by November 30, 2023.



It is our great pleasure to announce the reopening of the FIPS201 Evaluation Program's compliance testing lab. An email announcing the reopening of the lab was sent out to the community on Wednesday, July 20, 2022. Due to a recent change in contract vehicles the lab had to physically move to a new location. Even though the distance was not far, the move itself was time consuming. We would like to thank those PACS vendors who took the time to certify their current installations prior to the move, and you may be called upon to verify that everything moved over is in working order. You will be contacted by the lab team if further assistance is needed. For those of you who have been waiting to submit new applications, or conduct updates, we appreciate your patience. You are now free to send the paperwork to our group email address fips201ep at gsa dot gov.



GSA FICAM Testing Program Vendor - The current contract with the testing services provider for the GSA FICAM Testing Lab concludes on June 15, 2022. We are working to ensure a smooth transition for all our Vendors as we onboard a new provider.During the transition period, please note the following

  1. Vendor Verification of System Health - We ask that each Vendor schedule an in-person appointment with the Lab prior to June 3, 2022, to verify the health of its installed system. Each Vendor representative may test its system during the visit, but updating software and hardware will not be permitted. The Lab will perform a small number of tests from the FRTC during the visit. Results will be documented, signed by Vendor and Lab representatives, and submitted to GSA. For any Vendor that is unable to go to the Lab in person prior to June 3, 2022, the Lab will issue a status report to GSA reflecting the system’s state as “unknown.” Until an in-person visit with the new Lab provider occurs to establish system status, no new applications will be accepted.
  2. Testing in Progress - The Lab is making every effort to complete as much testing as possible before we enter the transition phase. Testing for Vendor systems in process will conclude by May 27, 2022.
  3. New Vendor Applications - Applications received before May 31, 2022, will be reviewed by the existing Lab provider. Applications received after May 31, 2022, will be paused until the new provider is in place.
  4. System Updates and New Installations - System updates and new installations will not be processed until the new Lab provider is in place.

    We will issue an announcement in June detailing next steps in the transition process, including the process of moving existing systems to a new physical location.



PACS APL testing form has undergone a major revision. The new testing APL Application form consolidates multiple documents and reduces redundant information across those forms. All submissions for upgrade will only need to submit a completed new APL Application form unless a significant change to architecture requires new FRTC per the lab's discretion.



PACS FRTC v1.4.2 Rev B has been published and is in effect immediately. This revision includes the following updates.
- Mobile / Handheld FRTC Test Cases (Section 8) are re-instated.
- Corrections and clarifications to existing test cases.



PACS FRTC v1.4.2 Revision A has been published and is in effect immediately. This update includes optional test cases associated with the following functionalities.

  • Secure Messaging (SM)
  • On-Card Comparison (OCC)
  • Backend Registration for PACS
Additionally, a new testing procedure called the FRTC Express has been published and will be enacted for those solutions that have previously undergone full testing. The FRTC Express is aimed at streamlining testing associated with solution updates.



The FIPS 201 Evaluation Program will be removing card holders (also known as badge holders or electromagnetically opaque sleeves) from the Approved Products List on January 31st, 2021. GSA will no longer accept applications to certify card holders. Card holders and related products are still commercially available off-the-shelf; however, the use of these products is optional and testing is no longer in the best interests of the government.

Please note the removal of this category should not impact any existing acquisitions. Product categories not identified by the Program have no requirement for FIPS 201 conformance and available products should be able to satisfy the agency defined security requirements provided direct testing.


Testing and Evaluation

We test and evaluate a variety of products and services, such as:

  • Smart cards (secure elements) that are used in Personal Identity Verification (PIV), Personal Identity Verification - Interoperable (PIV-I), and Common Access Card (CAC) credentials.
  • Physical access control systems for buildings, including readers and infrastructure.
  • Service providers who manage, install, or provide hosted solutions for issuing Personal Identity Verification (PIV) and CAC credentials.

If you’re looking for testing procedures related to products not listed above, review the Program Announcements. Over the years, some product testing has been deprecated to eliminate redundancy, or the product categories have become stable and represent general commercial use products.

Product Testing

Product testing is performed by either:

  • Third-party accredited testing labs, OR
  • GSA-managed testing labs

If the product passes testing and review, the vendor is granted a certification letter, and the product is placed on the Approved Products List (APL). The APL includes product information, version, date of certification, and special considerations.

Visit the Vendors page for more on testing and certification.

Testing Guidance and Documents

The sections below provide the guidance and application documents associated with the testing and evaluation of the various products and services indicated in the Testing and Evaluation section above. Functional requirements for the products are outlined in each test procedure. Review the testing agreements and the test procedure for your specific product and submit the associated agreement and package to

Physical Access Control System

GSA tests and validates the interoperability of PIV and CAC credentials with the software and hardware used for physical access control to government facilities.

Review the PACS APL Guidance Documents and PACS Application Package Requirements listed below, choose the application documentation that applies to your solution to be evaluated, and submit it to

PACS APL Guidance Documents

The documents in this section provide guidance and information necessary for evaluating a PACS solution to be listed on the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program’s Approved Products List (APL) and the criteria followed for the Removed Products List (RPL). It is recommended that the applicant review all the guidance documents listed in this section before submitting the Approved Product List Application Form.

Functional Requirements and Test Cases Guidance Documents:

Topology Guidance Documents:

PACS Application Package Submission Requirements for New Systems or Updates to Previously Approved Systems

All applicants, please complete the following steps:

  1. Review, complete, and sign the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program PACS Application Package Checklist, v1.0.0 (Mandatory), and ensure all the applicable and mandatory paperwork is submitted along with the application document.
  2. Complete and sign the Approved Products List Application Form, v1.1.0 (MS Word, November 30, 2023) (Mandatory) – Required for each solution submission, new or upgrade.
  3. Complete and sign the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program – Evaluation Agreement, version 2.1.0 (MS Word, November 30, 2023) (Mandatory) – Required for each solution submission, new or upgrade.
  4. List the equipment used for the APL testing in the equipment table linked here – Equipment Table GSA PACS Application v0.2.0 (MS Excel, November 2023) (Mandatory). 
  5. Complete the PACS FRTC Workbook, v1.4.2 Rev B (MS Excel, October 2021) (Mandatory) for your topology.
  6. Provide a solution Configuration Guide (Mandatory) that includes, at a minimum:
    • Screenshots and instructions on configuring the submitted solution to meet the test cases.
    • Location of all log files needed to verify that the solution performs the test cases.
    • Steps necessary to verify the hardware, software, and firmware of all items listed on the equipment table in the APL application.
    • Responses to the Vendor FRTC Questionnaire linked in #13.
  7. Include the following document when adding a new series or adding a new product to a prior listed series, signed by a C- or VP-level individual:
  8. Include the following document when licensing an existing product that is already on the GSA PACS Reader APL, signed by a C- or VP-level individual:
  9. Complete and sign the Supply Chain Self-Attestation Form, v1.4.2 (MS Word, March 3, 2020) (Mandatory).
  10. Include all applicable VPAT statements, (Mandatory, if applicable).
  11. Include all relevant UL-294 listing documents (Mandatory, if applicable).
  12. Include all applicable FIPS 140-2/140-3 listing documents (Mandatory, if applicable).
  13. Respond to the Vendor FRTC Questionnaire, v1.0.0 (Mandatory).
  14. Submit all completed forms to

Personal Identity Verification Credentials

  • Annual PIV Credential Issuer (PCI) Testing Application Form (PDF, February 2020) – If you are an agency or organization submitting for Annual PCI Review, submit this application form signed along with all the testing artifacts listed below to; two testing options are available:
    • In-person Lab Testing - testing organizations can provide available dates and times to visit the GSA FIPS 201 lab when sending in their signed application form OR
    • Remote Testing - testing organizations can leverage the tools listed below and email the outputs generated and card images to

All applicants must provide the following required artifacts as part of the Annual PCI review:

Derived PIV Credentials

Agencies that wish to issue D-PIV credentials should follow these steps:

  1. Perform a NIST SP 800-79 assessment and receive an Authority To Operate (ATO).
  2. Work with your Shared Service Provider (SSP) to obtain D-PIV Object Identifiers (OIDs).
  3. Submit sample D-PIV public certificates for testing or provide results from the Certificate Profile Conformance Tool (CPCT) to

Upon successful completion of DPCI testing, the agency or organization will be approved to issue D-PIV credentials

PIV Card Body

All applicants, please complete the following steps:

  1. Review the Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Card Body Approval Procedures v11.0 (PDF, April 2023) – outlining the approval procedures and evaluation criterion for getting the PIV Card body (Product) on the APL and Section 2 Application Package
  2. Provide the Product itself (see Section 2) of the Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Card Body Approval Procedures v11.0 (PDF, April 2023)
  3. Complete and provide the PIV Card APL Evaluation Program Application Form (Word, April 2023) – Required for each product submission.
  4. Complete and provide the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program Lab Services Agreement, V3.0.0 (PDF) – Required for each product submission.
  5. Complete and provide the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program Attestations to Federal Acquisition Regulations related to the Trade Agreement Act v3.3 – Required for each product submission.
  6. Complete and provide the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program Attestations Form for PIV Card Body Approval v1.0 – Required for each product submission.

Test Card Loaners

GSA can loan you test cards to help you pre-test your physical access control system products.

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