The All Partners Access Network (APAN) provides for effective information exchange and collaboration between the United States Department of Defense (DOD) and any external country, organization, agency or individual that does not have ready access to traditional DOD systems and networks.
It enables professional networking and communication, increases situational awareness, establishes pre-defined communications channels, relationships and information work flows, and provides a forum for sharing lessons learned and best practices in a wide variety of contexts including crisis response, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, and training and exercises.
Benefits include decreased response times, greater coordination, information transparency and broader cross-organizational knowledge visibility. While encouraging the open and easy exchange of information, APAN also seeks to ensure the protection of sensitive information like users’ identities and personal communications.
The All Partners Access Network history can be traced back to 1997 when the Virtual Information Center (VIC) was established with the mission of conducting research using public domain materials for the Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM) and his staff. Admiral Dennis C. Blair, then Commander of USPACOM, recognized the value of utilizing the same type of web-based technology used in the VIC to help meet his regional security cooperation initiatives.
In March 2000, the Asia-Pacific Area Network, a non-dot-mil (non-military) commercial internet portal, was stood up to enable online communication and information sharing. Over the years, APAN’s mission has grown to support global Humanitarian Assistance / Disaster Relief HA/DR operations, partnership building, joint exercises, conferences, table-top events, and are currently at the crossroad to becoming an Enterprise DOD Unclassified Information Sharing Program.
In response to APAN’s expanding global customer base, in February 2010, APAN was renamed the All Partners Access Network. APAN's unique organizational culture based on innovation, resourcefulness and customer service has made it a leader in unclassified information sharing and collaboration throughout the DOD.