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The Department of Veterans Affairs has named Dan Galik to be the agency’s new acting chief information security officer, MeriTalk has learned. Galik, VA’s former Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Security Operations, will replace Stan Lowe, who announced his retirement on Aug. 7. “Daniel Galik will serve as Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary and Chief Information […] […]

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The cybersecurity sprint may have ended, but efforts to improve cybersecurity aren’t over, Federal Chief Information Officer (CIO) Tony Scott said at the August 11 FITARA Forum. “I wanted to assure you we’re not taking our eye off the ball on that,” Scott said. “I can tell you that I’m very pleased with the overall […] […]

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Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott urged agencies to make the most of their new authority under the Federal Information Technology Acquisition and Reform Act (FITARA). At the August 11 FITARA Forum, Scott said cutting spending on legacy systems represents a unique problem because agencies are spending more than previously believed to prop up old […] […]

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Two weeks after a spear phishing attack against the unclassified email system of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Federal Chief Information Officer (CIO) Tony Scott suggested at the August 11 FITARA Forum that agencies provide a little cyber education to their work force. Scott credited Transportation Department CIO Richard McKinney with coming up with the idea. […] […]

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In its first six-month progress report of the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP), the General Services Administration (GSA) said there are more than 1,400 “cloud implementations” across the Federal government and 82 percent of those are FedRAMP-compliant. The new report shows that the number of cloud service providers (CSPs) jumped 41 percent and […] […]

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An Energy Department laboratory is moving forward with a mobile device management (MDM) program that will consolidate and simplify its approach while broadening access for employees. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory used two separate MDM services to manage its bring-your-own-device initiative and laboratory-owned devices, Jane Edwards reported in Executive Business. But running a MDM environment […] […]

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Federal agencies increased their use of authentication and made other changes to improve cybersecurity during the 30-day “sprint” to strengthen computer networks and protect data, said Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott. “Agencies are reducing the number of privileged users and working with (the Department of Homeland Security) to scan their networks on an ongoing […] […]

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Defense Department spending on IT in Fiscal 2016 will exceed 2015 spending, according to two analyses. How much the IT spend will increase depends on whose analysis you read. Bloomberg Government predicts DoD will fork over $37.3 billion on IT in Fiscal 2016. In its five-year forecast, covering 2015 through 2019, IDC projects DoD will […] […]

Data breaches at the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) have prompted a major cybersecurity push in Congress, and two bills propose giving the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) new authority and tools to protect Federal systems.






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A consortium led by IBM has developed the world’s smallest, functional microelectronic devices – computer chips constructed around circuitry just 7 nanometers wide. The new chips, produced using silicon-germanium by a group comprised of IBM, Global Foundries, the State University of New York Polytechnic Institute and Samsung, use chip geometries that are half the dimensions […] […]

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Cloud service providers (CSPs) and Third Party Assessment Organizations (3PAOs) must now include social engineering and phishing attacks as part of efforts to test their systems, Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) officials said last week. The FedRAMP Program Management Office detailed the changes in the new Penetration Test Guidance issued July 6. “The new […] […]

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The government created the Internet. Now it’s almost full, and you may have to take a number if you want in. The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN), the group that hands out the numerical codes, said last week it is running out of Internet addresses. On July 1, “for the first time, the American […] […]

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Hackers stole sensitive information on 21.5 million people in a recently disclosed cyber-attack that breached the Federal government’s database of security background checks, Politico’s David Perera has reported. MeriTalk yesterday said the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) was preparing to disclose details of the new hack this week. OPM has previously said 4.2 million current […] […]

Decades of funding shortfalls and tired legacy systems are to blame for the massive data breach at the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), says OPM Director Katherine Archuleta, who defended her agency and its staff under heavy questioning in Congress last week. Case in point: OPM was using the most basic version of Einstein, the […] […]

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Cloud is all about speed. Cost savings are great and agility is great, but it’s the potential to increase the speed – and therefore effectiveness – of government that is cloud’s greatest potential benefit.






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We’re all addicted. Consumers spent 37.5 hours per month accessing apps on their phones in 2014, up 63 percent in just two years, according to the consumer research giant Nielsen.






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The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued final guidance June 10 detailing what agencies need to do to implement the Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA). The document is barely changed from the draft circulated in April. That’s one thing you need to know – here are six more: 1.    Implementing the common baseline […] […]

So the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) admits it’s suffered what just might be the worst data breach in history, with some 4 million Federal employees’ personal data exposed, and China is once again to blame.






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