MITRE, a manager of Federally-funded research and development centers targeting Federal defense, intelligence, and cybersecurity functions, recommended in a new report released today that the Defense Department (DoD) undertake a sweeping menu of actions to improve military supply chain security, and warned that maintaining the status quo of current security policy may have ruinous consequences. […]

President Trump today signed into law the FY 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which clocks in at $717 billion in spending for the Pentagon. After months of negotiations, hearings, and compromises, the must-pass defense spending bill was signed during a visit by President Trump to Fort Drum in upstate New York this afternoon.






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Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan announced Thursday that the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit Experimental (DIUx) will undergo a re-branding. The unit will drop “experimental” from its name and will be called Defense Innovation Unit, or DIU.






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Vice President Pence said today that the Trump administration and the Defense Department are preparing to move forward with detailed plans to establish a new United States Space Command as a unified combatant command, and if Congress approves, as a separate branch of the military–dubbed the U.S. Space Force – equal to and separate from the existing five branches.






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The U.S. Cyber Command (Cybercom) and the National Security Agency have joined the effort to protect the integrity of this year’s midterm elections, which are occurring under the shadow of Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and warnings from U.S. intelligence agencies that 2018 is seeing more of the same.






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The Pentagon is looking to get into the weeds with cyber defense, using artificial intelligence to hunt down attacks that may use the size and complexity of its systems to hide out while waiting to strike.






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Wayne Belk, director of the National Insider Threat Task Force (NITTF), said today at an event hosted by Nextgov and Equifax that his unit in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence is now working with the Defense Department to clarify and strengthen the roles of the Federal government’s insider threat staff, beginning with its security analysts.






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Bill Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center (NCSC) in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said today that the billions of dollars the U.S. government and private sector spend each year on cybersecurity are not being properly and efficiently utilized unless government and industry wrap human resources departments tightly into security discussions.






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Charles Phalen, director of the National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB), said today at an event hosted by NextGov and Equifax that he supports a proposal in the President’s government reform and reorganization plan to move NBIB “in its entirety from the Office of Personnel Management into the Department of Defense.”






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The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) announced yesterday the appointment of Air Force Colonel Bradley Barnhart as the new chief of staff at DISA.






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The Department of Defense is getting on board with some critical website and email protections that have been mandated across civilian Federal government agencies, even if it is lagging somewhat behind other departments in applying encryption and anti-phishing measures.






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Federal IT leaders discussed the ways their organizations are tackling the proliferation of more and more endpoints on Federal networks at MeriTalk’s Cyber Security Brainstorm Thursday. In particular, ever-increasing mobile connectivity is creating the potential for further headaches, but the officials advised that next-gen technologies and proper network and data governance provide avenues to expand the ways employees work without compromising security at the network edge.






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By a vote of 87-10, the Senate today approved the FY2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and the corresponding conference report that ironed out differences between House and Senate versions of the bill. The legislation to fund the Defense Department (DoD) and U.S. armed forces now moves to President Trump’s desk for his signature.






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2018 Cyber Security Brainstorm

Panelists at MeriTalk’s Cyber Security Brainstorm on Thursday will shed light on a host of vital cybersecurity issues, including threats to control systems, the foundational importance of security to IT modernization efforts, and the keys to success in risk-based security practices, according to a sneak peek into the thinking of just a few of the 25 experts scheduled to speak.






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