Author Archive

Edward Graham

Staff Reporter, Nextgov/FCW

Edward Graham
Edward Graham is a technology reporter for Nextgov/FCW, where he reports on national security technologies and policies, the Department of Veterans Affairs and election security issues. He received his master’s degree in Journalism and Public Affairs from American University in 2016.
Acquisition

VA extends EHR contract with Oracle Cerner for 11 months

The agreement comes after Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough said the department plans to end its pause on deployments of the modernized electronic health record system during fiscal year 2025.

Emerging Tech

Veterans Health Administration creates new office to streamline tech initiatives

The Veterans Health Administration has combined a number of its existing programs into one office to serve as the agency’s “central coordinator of digital health strategy and execution.”

Artificial Intelligence

Use AI to fight AI-generated election threats, report recommends

Hyperlocal voter suppression, language-based influence operations and deepfakes were listed as the most likely AI-generated threats to upcoming elections.

Modernization

VA still needs to shore up usability of new EHR system, GAO says

More than one-third of the government watchdog's priority open recommendations for the Department of Veterans Affairs have to do with improving oversight and management of the new electronic health record system. 

Modernization

Lawmakers look to restore TSA funding to speed screening tech deployment

The measure is one of three bipartisan proposals rolled out this week that seek to bolster funding for TSA’s deployment of new technologies and to limit invasive pat-downs of travelers.

Emerging Tech

Bipartisan House bill seeks to reauthorize federal counter-drone authority

A proposal to extend the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice’s authority to mitigate threats from unmanned aircraft systems would also grant new counter-drone abilities to the FAA.

Defense

Pentagon’s AI office awards Palantir a contract to create a data-sharing ecosystem

The Pentagon’s marketplace for quickly onboarding new tech solutions helped Palantir receive its contract in 30 days.

Defense

Defense Digital Service directors tapped unauthorized tech without proper waivers, watchdog finds

The Pentagon’s Office of the Inspector General found that former Defense Digital Service heads had “exposed DOD information to additional cybersecurity risk and increased the risk of compromise.”

Digital Government

HHS launches online tool to identify communities hit hardest by extreme heat

The heat and health index tool provides zip code level data to flag neighborhoods that are the most at risk of experiencing harmful health outcomes as a result of high temperatures.

People

VA's tech training program for vets is up for renewal, but backers want more accountability

A provision in a recently introduced legislative package would extend VA’s VET-TEC training program through September 2026 while seeking to address employment disparities.

Emerging Tech

NOAA looks to sharpen solar storm forecasts with new satellite

The agency’s GOES-U satellite, scheduled to launch next month, will include an advanced instrument, called a compact coronagraph, to provide scientists with faster, more reliable data about solar storms.

Cybersecurity

Watchdog calls out EPA for continued cybersecurity concerns

The EPA has still not implemented GAO’s 2019 recommendation to develop a process for conducting an organization-wide cybersecurity risk assessment. 

Digital Government

DOD, VA need more data on how their toxic exposure tracking app is used, watchdog says

A report from the Government Accountability Office found that oversight of the joint system for centralizing toxic exposure records has fallen off, despite a growing influx of PACT Act-related claims.

Acquisition

VA extends Oracle's EHR contract for 1 month

Lawmakers are pressing for more accountability in the multibillion dollar contract amid delays, system downtime and patient safety concerns.

Artificial Intelligence

NASA is working to onboard AI tools

The space agency is testing a generative AI capability that officials expect to go live this summer with approvals to use sensitive internal data.

Digital Government

Automation helped VA approve 1 million PACT Act claims, officials say

The agency is relying on automated decision support and other optimization efforts to help process claims for veterans exposed to burn pits and other chemicals.

Artificial Intelligence

VA is already using AI to identify and assist veterans in crisis, officials say

The use of AI capabilities to review the agency’s surveys to veterans has helped save a couple thousand lives and helped another couple thousand retired servicemembers receive housing, according to VA’s chief veterans experience officer.

Emerging Tech

TSA’s biometrics deployment will take 25 years, unless lawmakers end fee diversion, agency head tells Congress

The Transportation Security Administration chief told lawmakers that it will take until 2049 to deploy facial recognition technology at U.S. airports if significant revenue from the 9/11 security fee continues to be diverted away from the agency.

Modernization

Proposed deep cuts to VA’s tech budget rankle lawmakers

The Biden administration’s FY25 budget request for the Department of Veterans Affairs proposes steep cuts to the agency’s IT services, including a 99% reduction in VA’s development initiatives from FY24.