Controlling access to profiles on Joomla front-end

A problem with using Civi for a members’ website based on Joomla is the need to be able to control access for different types of user – for example you might want ordinary members to be able to edit their own details but not see the details of other members for privacy reasons. But perhaps some groups of members might want to see each others details. Then you might have some users (eg the committee) who should be able to search and view all members, and others (eg the membership officer) who are allowed edit any user’s details. You don’t really want to let any of these people loose on the backend, so you need to be able to grant access to profile forms on the front end based on their credentials. The ideal solution is either to get CiviCRM’s ACL system working on Joomla, or to wait until Joomla 1.6 comes along with its own more fully featured ACL system – unfortunately I needed a quick solution that would provide a level of privacy and security to satisfy the organisation.