Just a handful of agencies have accounted for the nearly $2 billion saved by closing Federal data centers through the first five years of the program, according to scorecards distributed by Congress, and that trend is likely to continue. The Treasury Department, Defense Department, Department of Homeland Security, and Commerce Department saved a combined $1.652 […] […]

With cybersecurity threats mushrooming across the Federal government, members of a House committee said this week that the Education Department is failing to protect the data of millions of Americans. DoEd’s systems have been penetrated many times by the inspector general, and the department has failed to correct many recommendations from the IG and General […] […]

The U.S. Postal Service found more than it expected when it began using big data and analytics to detect mail theft. The postal service’s office of inspector general used analytics to set up trip wires, which set parameters around data to help detect anomalous activity. That allowed postal inspectors to determine that a carrier was […] […]

The majority of Federal agencies still rely heavily on legacy systems with little funding to buy new systems. But the good news is, most agency IT managers feel they can still squeeze a few more years out of their current systems, if given the right application upgrades, according to a new report from MeriTalk. The […] […]

The Paris attacks did more than reveal the growing capabilities of the Islamic State to carry out attacks in the West; they revealed what some fear are chinks in America’s big data armor. In a world where everything seems to be connected digitally and everyone seemingly leaves behind traces of digital dust that can be […] […]

One day big data may be able to help forecast cyberattacks before they occur, panelists said at MeriTalk’s Second Annual Big Data Brainstorm on Thursday. “I think the opportunities of using big data for cyber defense are really enormous,” said Jason Matheny, director of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA). Using the digital signatures […] […]

Agencies and other organizations are relying on analytics more and more to detect and stop fraud, but agencies should start with small projects and small data sets to pinpoint risk.






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Sen. Tom Cotton, a Republican from Arkansas who served two combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, introduced legislation Tuesday that would delay the termination of the National Security Agency’s bulk metadata collection program until the Obama administration can certify that its proposed new architecture for keeping the data in private-sector hands will not have a […] […]

The General Services Administration is considering a new, governmentwide acquisition contract that will allow Federal agencies to buy a range of cloud services to replace expiring blanket purchase agreements. The new contract would allow agencies to purchase infrastructure, platform, and software services and purchase integrated delivery solutions like hybrid cloud, Stan Kaczmarczyk, director of the […] […]

Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella took Washington, D.C., by storm Tuesday and detailed the software giant’s rapid transformation from being the target of choice for hackers because of poor security and coding practices to becoming one of the computing world’s leading information security and cyber intelligence firms. The distinction is an important one for […] […]

The Department of Veterans Affairs awarded a little-known contract Tuesday for virtual reality software that could one day have a dramatic impact on the ability of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans to deal with the various symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. In a relatively small contract of just $77,496, the VA partnered with the […] […]

This article originally appeared Nov. 10 as a LinkedIn post and is printed here with the permission of the author. In late June, I was honored to testify before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government on the recent Office of Personnel Management (OPM) data breaches. My testimony focused on the broader […] […]

The cloud is becoming a popular tool for businesses across the country, with 88 percent of enterprises saying cloud improves responsiveness to business needs, 69 percent saying it has enabled them to re-engineer one or more of their business processes, and 65 percent saying it improves overall operations, according to Verizon Enterprise Solutions’ 2016 State […] […]

The U.S. Census Bureau is running out of time to upgrade its IT systems ahead of the 2020 head count and could save $1.4 billion by using administrative records instead of foot soldiers that go door-to-door to find nonresponders, the Government Accountability Office says in two new reports. Enough is enough, the report says as […] […]

Big data and analytics hold great promise for improving the performance of Federal agencies and services. But leveraging data to improve agency operations while also maintaining security is not always easy. MeriTalk recently talked to Webster Mudge, the senior director of technology solutions at Cloudera, about how the open-source enterprise data management company approaches big […] […]

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is looking for two “experienced and energetic innovators” to help expand and modernize the National Notifiable Disease Surveillance System (NNDSS). The two new hires?a software platforms architect and a data integration and management architect?would be part of the CDC Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR) program and would work hand-in-hand with […] […]

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s hearing on the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA) produced some good commentary from members of Congress and witnesses alike. Here are five comments from testimony and the subsequent discussion that provide perspective on the hearing. “I am so grateful to this committee for FITARA. I think […] […]

Before Third Party Assessment Organizations (3PAOs) can perform security assessments of Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) for FedRAMP, they need the approval of a nonprofit in Frederick, Md. The American Association for Laboratory Accreditation, or A2LA, isn’t a household name in cybersecurity. But with Federal agencies spending billions of dollars on cloud computing, A2LA has an […] […]

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