Step 1 - Setting up for Windows | National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

NGA Employee CAC Resources

Step 1 - Setting up for Windows

To get started you will need:

  1. CAC
  2. Card reader
  3. Middleware (if necessary, depending on your operating system version)


You can get started using your CAC by following these basic steps:


  1. Get a card reader.
    At this time, the best advice for obtaining a card reader is to work with your home component to get one. In addition, please review the DoD CAC Reader Specifications for more information regarding the requirements for a card reader.

  2. Install middleware, if necessary.
    You may need additional middleware, depending on the operating system you use. If you are still having trouble, please contact for more information on the middlew​are requirements for your organization.

  3. Install DoD root certificates with InstallRoot (32-bit, 64-bit or Non Administrator).
    In order for your machine to recognize your CAC certificates and DoD websites as trusted, run the InstallRoot utility (32-bit64-bit or Non Administrator) to install the DoD CA certificates on Microsoft operating systems. If you’re running an alternate operating system such as Mac OS or Linux, you can import certificates from the PKCS 7 bundle. The InstallRoot User Guide is available here.

  4. Make certificates available to your operating system and/or browser, if necessary.
    Pick your browser for specific instructions.


Recommended CAC reader hardware:

  • SCR3310v2.0
  • uTrust SmartFold SCR3500
  • OMNIKEY 312
  • OMNIKEY 3021
  • F1DN005U
  • F1DN008U

If you are having trouble with these steps, please email CSR (Operation Hours: 0600-1700 EST).

Email CSR