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Joseph Marks

Senior Correspondent

Joseph Marks covers cybersecurity for Nextgov. He previously covered cybersecurity for Politico, intellectual property for Bloomberg BNA and federal litigation for Law360. He covered government technology for Nextgov during an earlier stint at the publication and began his career at Midwestern newspapers covering everything under the sun. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown University.

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ICE drops BlackBerry in favor of iPhone

October 19, 2012 This story has been updated to add details. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency plans to end its eight-year relationship with the BlackBerry in favor of iPhones, according to solicitation documents posted Friday. The move could prove a major blow to ailing BlackBerry maker Research In Motion. ICE plans to...

BlackBerry’s advertising conundrum

October 19, 2012 The ailing smartphone and tablet maker BlackBerry released a video this week reminding everyone of its continuing relevance to its core consumers: government agencies at the federal, state and local level. The video underscores the company’s chief advertising conundrum, though. Its comparative advantage -- security -- is difficult to convey...

Industry responds cautiously to IT reform act

October 18, 2012 Acquisition experts responded cautiously Thursday to a legislative proposal to overhaul federal information technology purchases, noting the reforms could make IT buying more efficient but could also lead to more paperwork without more payoff. The proposed Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act would grant agency chief information officers greater budget authority...

TechAmerica forecasts ‘anemic’ federal IT spending growth

October 18, 2012 Federal information technology spending is most likely to hold relatively steady during the next five years despite major shifts in government spending elsewhere and transformations in the IT industry, according to a forecast from the government-industry group TechAmerica. Partisan gridlock, a slower-than expected economic recovery and the possibility of mandatory...

State Department seeks system to track diplomats through cell phone signals

October 17, 2012 The agency charged with securing U.S. embassies plans to purchase a system that could locate and track diplomats during an emergency based on the signals beaming from their satellite and cell phones, solicitation documents show. That system could be extremely effective at monitoring security during an embassy or consulate attack,...

from govexec

It Can Pay To Be Willing To Fail

October 17, 2012 How do you spur innovation in government? Be willing to fail. How do you make government willing to fail? Make failure cheap. That’s the idea behind Development Innovation Ventures, run by Maura O’Neill, the U.S. Agency for International Development’s chief innovation officer. The program takes a venture capital approach to...

What I don’t want to see during tonight’s debate

October 16, 2012 My colleague Bob Brewin has put together an excellent list of items he’d like to see addressed during tonight’s town hall-style presidential debate at Hofstra University on Long Island. I can’t match Bob’s sagacity, so I’ll just note what I’d rather not see: that stream of debate-focused tweets that popped...

CDC app will track injury and violent death trends

October 16, 2012 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded a 3-year contract to BNL Consulting on Monday to build a tablet and smartphone application that allow users to parse through state and national data on injuries and violent deaths, contracting documents show. The application will essentially be a mobile version of...

What happens when staff use their own devices for work? They do their jobs.

October 15, 2012 Cash-strapped agencies are increasingly looking to outsource the cost of smartphones, tablets and even teleworkers’ laptops to the employees themselves. The basic theory behind bring-your-own-device policies is: why should agencies pay full price for something employees are already buying for themselves? The greatest barriers to implementing BYOD plans across agencies...

DARPA to shift away from applied battlefield tech

October 12, 2012 As the U.S. commitment in Afghanistan winds down, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency should focus less on responding to immediate conflicts and more on tackling obstacles the United States could face years or decades in the future, the agency’s director said Friday. “We’re coming through an extended period with...

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