New ID system will open its arms to social networking sites and others later this year
BBC Online users will be able to sign into their accounts with their Facebook IDs, thanks to a new single sign-on system coming soon from the BBC.
The BBC is migrating all of its online services over to the system, known as BBC iD, which will replace Auntie's previous log-in system, called SSO (single-sign on).
According to the BBC's Internet Blog, the change has been prompted by a change in Auntie's internal tech architecture which will see the broadcaster move to Forge, which uses Java and PHP on top of MySQL, Apache and Memcached. Rather than migrate SSO, the BBC decided to rebuild it, and spawned BBC iD.
The BBC is introducing a new form of single sign-on for its online properties
BBC iD is now used on most of the Beeb's blogs, message boards and three of its largest communities.
The new system will help support increased personalisation - for example, allowing content to be tailored to a person's first language - and better security.
It will also allow users to sign into BBC services through other IDs such as OpenID, which works with Google and Yahoo! logins, as well as Facebook Connect from later this year.
Despite the existence of such ID systems, the BBC still felt the need to create its own, according to BBC iD's product manager Simon Cross, writing on the BBC's Internet Blog.
"However, we still felt we needed our own base-level sign-in system, both for those users who don't have external logins they want to use, and also for those who just don't want these things linked together. As the BBC has a mandate to serve all licence fee payers, building our own standalone system was a necessary evil."