Bill to Codify FedRAMP Set for Vote in Senate Committee

BlackJack3D/istockphoto

If passed, agencies would have to explain their reasons for rejecting previously authorized cloud products or services.

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is about to vote on a bipartisan bill seeking to expedite agencies’ use of secure clouds through the General Services Administration’s Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, or FedRAMP. 

FedRAMP requires vendors of cloud products or services to obtain security certifications from external third-party assessors before authorizing them to operate on their systems. There is also a Joint Authorization Board made up of various federal officials that can validate and approve vendors’ certifications. Without impinging on the authority of agency heads, the Senate bill calls for a presumption of adequacy for vendors that have already been authorized through the system—an attempt to streamline the process. 

S. 3099, the Federal Secure Cloud Improvement and Jobs Act of 2021, is on the docket for a committee markup Wednesday along with a number of other cybersecurity bills, according to a committee press release. It is noted in the business meeting agenda as the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Act of 2021. The FedRAMP Authorization Act, which is almost identical to the Senate bill passed the House in January and was included in the House-passed National Defense Authorization Act of 2021.

This time around, following a series of broad attacks on the federal enterprise leveraging products from IT management firm SolarWinds and Microsoft resellers, senators are noting increased risks along with benefits associated with cloud products and services. 

“The legislation comes after an announcement from Microsoft, which provides cloud services to multiple federal agencies, that Russia-backed hackers have been relentlessly targeting cloud service companies and others since this summer,” reads a press release Tuesday highlighting the bill’s introduction.

The bill is sponsored by Committee Chairman Gary Peters, D-Mich., with support from Sens. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., and Steve Daines, R-Mont. 

“Cloud-based systems have already shown they can greatly improve government efficiency and save taxpayer dollars, but we must ensure that the technology is safe from relentless cyberattacks,” Peters said. “This important bipartisan bill will make sure that agencies can procure cloud-based technology quickly, while ensuring these systems–and the information they store–are secure. It will also help companies that provide these technologies grow and create jobs, and incentivize them to provide innovative products to bolster our nation’s competitiveness in this space.”

Both the House and Senate bills call for the authorization of $20 million for FedRAMP’s operation and the creation of a Federal Secure Cloud Advisory Committee to be chaired by the GSA administrator. The administrator would appoint its members, which would include representatives from industry to advise government leaders on “technical, financial, programmatic, and operational matters regarding secure adoption of cloud computing products and services.”   

The committee would not have to abide by the rules of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, which requires transparency and open participation from the public. However the bills would require a public comment process before the GSA issues any new guidance on FedRAMP.

Under both pieces of legislation, agency heads would have to submit their cloud procurement policies to the director of the Office of Management and Budget. Under the Senate bill, agencies that decide to reject a previously approved product or service would have to explain why.

“Upon completing an assessment or authorization activity with respect to a particular cloud computing product or service, if an agency determines that the information and data the agency has reviewed … is wholly or substantially deficient for the purposes of performing an authorization of the cloud computing product or service, the head of the agency shall document as part of the resulting FedRAMP authorization package the reasons for this determination,” the bill reads. 

RELATED PODCAST

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.