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Senators Zero in on ‘Inaccurate’ IT Dashboard Ratings

April 22, 2015 The leaders of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee are cracking down on agency chief information officers who don’t appear to be accurately reporting the risks associated with large-scale IT projects. They’re starting with the Treasury Department. The committee “is examining the lack of transparency and inaccuracy of...

Does the Government Need to Rethink Its Weed Ban to Get Cyber Talent?

April 21, 2015 Some members of Congress want to know if the government’s prohibition on pot-smoking federal employees is harming its ability to recruit top cybersecurity talent. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., and Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., have submitted amendments to two sweeping pieces of cyber information-sharing legislation being considered by the House this week that...

Republican Lawmakers Want More Accountability for US CTO Role

April 20, 2015 This post has been updated. Republican members of Congress want to nail down a firmer job description for the U.S. chief technology officer and require the administration’s top technologist to be confirmed by the Senate. The CTO position, currently held by former Google executive Megan Smith, is situated within the...

Federal Employees, Don’t Do This on Social Media

April 17, 2015 The Office of Governmentwide Ethics has laid out new guidance for personal social media use by government employees. Ethics officials say they’ve been inundated with questions from agencies about how their employees’ Twitter and Facebook habits conform with govermentwide ethics rules. Much of the guidance laid out in the April...

Agencies Botch IT Savings Estimates by $3.8 Billion

April 16, 2015 Agencies now predict saving less than half of what they originally estimated from an Obama administration effort to better track federal information technology projects, according to a new watchdog report. In 2013, agencies estimated saving at least $5.8 billion over the next two years as result of the PortfolioStat process,...

The NSA's Fight To Keep Its Best Hackers

April 16, 2015 The National Security Agency is probably among the best-equipped parts of the federal government at recruiting, training and staffing an elite team of cybersecurity professionals. Thanks to Congress, the agency has been granted significant leeway in bypassing the sluggish federal hiring process to onboard staff quicker and greater latitude to...

Does the Federal Government Need a New $400M Cyber Campus?

April 15, 2015 There’s growing bipartisan skepticism about a planned $400 million-plus Washington, D.C., civilian cybersecurity campus to serve as a central clearinghouse for federal civilian information security professionals. Sen. John Hoeven, R-S.D., chairman of the Senate Appropriations subcommittee with oversight of the Department of Homeland Security’s budget, expressed Wednesday concern about the...

In Fierce Battle for Cyber Talent, Even NSA Struggles to Keep Elites on Staff

April 14, 2015 The National Security Agency is probably among the best-equipped parts of the federal government at recruiting, training and staffing an elite team of cybersecurity professionals. Thanks to Congress, the agency has been granted significant leeway in bypassing the sluggish federal hiring process to onboard staff quicker and greater latitude to...

The Federal Government Needs a ‘Master Plan’ for Getting More Cyber Talent into Government

April 13, 2015 The Obama administration needs to formally declare a “critical need” for cybersecurity talent in government and allow all agencies to fast-track the often sluggish federal hiring process when recruiting for a broad range of cyber positions. The government should also stand up a civilian Cyber Reserve Training Corps, modeled on...

Can These 40 People Fix Federal IT in 6 Months?

April 9, 2015 The Obama administration is kicking off a six-month effort to come up with some long-term fixes to the systemic issues that have long plagued federal agencies when it comes to building and buying IT systems. Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott on Thursday officially launched the IT Solutions Challenge at...