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Lawmakers Want Off-the-Clock ‘Cyber Protection’ for Some Pentagon Personnel

May 24, 2016 Lawmakers crafting a massive annual Pentagon policy want the Defense Department to be able to provide off-the-clock cybersecurity protection to DOD personnel deemed “to be of highest risk of vulnerability to cyberattacks on their personal devices, networks and persons,” That provision is included in the Senate’s version of the National...

Does Your HR Office Really Get Cybersecurity?

May 20, 2016 As part of an ambitious White House effort initiated last year after a massive government data breach, the Obama administration plans to soon issue the first-ever governmentwide HR strategy for recruiting information security professionals. Such strategy may be sorely needed, new survey results suggest. Despite longstanding calls for the federal...

Senators Want More Detail on IT Plans Behind New Background Check Agency

May 20, 2016 Two top Democrats on a Senate panel with oversight of government management want the Office of Personnel Management to hand over “detailed” planning documents related to the standing up of a new agency responsible for conducting federal background investigations. In particular, the senators want more specifics on IT development and...

Lawmaker: Agencies Don’t Need Billions in New Funding to Upgrade Legacy IT

May 19, 2016 The chairman of a House panel with oversight of federal IT issues, has a message for U.S. Chief Information Officer Tony Scott: You may not be getting that $3 billion IT modernization fund you’ve been asking for. During a hearing Wednesday on how federal CIOs are implementing federal IT reform,...

Federal Board Has a Plan to Secure Health, Retirement Plans from Cyberthreats

May 18, 2016 A federal board that advises the Labor Department on issues affecting U.S. employee benefit plans intends to issue draft recommendations for tightening up cybersecurity in the nation’s health and retirement plans. The recommendations aim to help plan sponsors “understand, evaluate and protect benefit plan data and assets from cybersecurity risks,”...

Audit: DHS Employees Not Fooled by Phishing Scams

May 17, 2016 First, the good news: Recent “social engineering” tests undertaken by an independent auditor reveal Homeland Security Department employees are getting savvier about basic cybersecurity. But the bad news: Some employees are still leaving sensitive paper documents strewn about their cubicles. Those findings are included in a May 6 report on...

Lawmakers Press Census to Appoint Permanent CIO Amid Prep for 2020 Count

May 16, 2016 Updated: This story has been updated with comment from the Census Bureau. House lawmakers are calling on the Census Bureau to appoint a permanent chief information officer as the agency prepares to enter crunch time in preparing and testing for the upcoming 2020 count. Agency officials have big plans for...

Contractor Working on OPM’s Cyber Upgrades Suddenly Quits, Citing 'Financial Distress'

May 13, 2016 Update: In a statement provided May 16, the company said it was restricted from “fully discussing” its work with OPM because of a confidentiality agreement. “There is much more to the story than is currently being reported,” the statement continued. “The company is confident that as and when the full...

Inefficient Federal IT Like Paying 400 IT Specialists to Maintain a Single iPad

May 12, 2016 Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott has a new weapon in his pitch for an alternative funding stream for upgrading legacy IT systems in government: basic math. The government's default mode when it comes technology upgrades -- neglecting to adopt more modern systems and continuing to pay costly maintenance fees...

OPM: A Year After the Big Breach

May 11, 2016 Earlier this year, red-team hackers at the Homeland Security Department, tasked with purposefully probing weak spots in agency security, ran into an unexpected problem at the Office of Personnel Management. The security of the notoriously hacked agency was actually too strong. The DHS team had set out to infiltrate OPM’s...