recommended reading

All the Deadlines in the White House’s New Cyber To-Do List

Orhan Cam/

The White House last week issued a broad new action plan for closing persistent cybersecurity gaps that have plagued federal agencies for years.

The “Cybersecurity Strategy and Implementation Plan for the Federal Civilian Government” presents a long-term framework for shoring up agencies’ online security -- but presents a waterfall of new deadlines in the short term for agency officials responsible for implementing the new plan.

Below are most of the deadlines agency chief information officers, chief information security officers and other officials are expected to meet, as laid out in the administration’s new cyber action plan.

Oct. 30, 2015

White House releases the “Cybersecurity Strategy and Implementation Plan for the Federal Civilian Government.”

Nov. 13, 2015

All agencies must identify and report to the Department of Homeland Security an inventory of their high-value assets -- federal systems containing sensitive or critical data.

Dec. 31, 2015
  • The director of national intelligence will lead a threat assessment of those agency assets “that are at high risk of targeting by adversaries.” DHS and others will “continuously diagnose and mitigate the cybersecurity protections” for the high-value assets.
  • The Department of Homeland Security will expand its intrusion-detection system known as EINSTEIN to all federal civilian agencies.
  • Agency CIOs are to identify their top five talent gaps in the area of IT security. OPM, meanwhile, will compile a list of existing special hiring authorities agencies can use to hire cybersecurity professionals to accelerate hiring.
  • The CIO Council will establish a subcommittee focused on ways to rapidly deploy emerging technology.
Jan. 31, 2016

OMB will release a new plan for implementing cybersecurity shared services. Areas include: identity services, mobile security, network segmentation and encryption.

March 31, 2016

OMB will update 2007 guidance on safeguarding personally identifiable information. The original memo, issued during the Bush administration, first required agencies to develop breach-notification policies.

April 30, 2016
  • GSA will finalize a contract vehicle for pre-vetted services for incident response services that can quickly be leveraged by agencies in the wake of a breach. GSA will also develop a “business due diligence information service” to provide agencies with a governmentwide capability for identifying and managing supply chain risks in the acquisition process.
  • The administration will publish a new “Cybersecurity Human Resources Strategy” aimed at helping agencies recruit, develop and maintain a pipeline of cybersecurity talent.
June 30, 2016

The National Institute of Standards and Technology will issue new guidance to agencies on recovering from a variety of cyberincidents, such as a standard data breach or a destructive malware campaign. Currently, “federalwide and agency-specific policies and practices for recovering from cyber events are inconsistent and vary in degree of maturity,” the plan states.

September 2016

DHS will accelerate the deployment of capabilities under the Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation program. Phase 2 of the program -- dealing with access control and authentication -- should be deployed by the end of fiscal 2016. The first phase of the program -- focused on endpoint security and security monitoring -- now covers 97 percent of agencies.

(Image via Orhan Cam/

By Jack Moore November 3, 2015


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.