News

IG: Navy and Marine Corps justified IT contracts with little or no competition

The Navy and Marine Corps reasonably justified about $220 million worth of IT contracts that were solicited without full and open competition, says the Defense Department's inspector general in a report issued Jan. 23.

CMS fell short of following contracting requirements in developing Healthcare.gov marketplace, audit says

In awarding the 60 contracts across 33 companies to help build the Healthcare.gov marketplace, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid fell short of complying with contracting requirements, an audit found.

 

One-third of federal managers in the dark on agency digital engagement, finds poll

One-third of senior federal employees don't know if their stakeholders are satisfied with the way their agency engages them digitally, and 35 percent don't think that their agency knows either, according to a report by ICF International, commissioned by the National Academy of Public Administration.

VA still needs to improve oversight of project management system for IT projects, audit says

The Veterans Affairs Department has taken steps to improve a project management process designed to make sure its IT projects are completed and delivered on time, but an internal audit found that accountability and oversight still need to be strengthened.

 

NIST to convene tech community to explore voting technology, direct digital manufacturing cybersecurity

In a Jan. 21 press release, NIST announced plans for a symposium on the future of voting systems and a meeting on the cybersecurity challenges facing new manufacturing technologies.

U.S. Digital Service seeking a few IT professionals, designers and project managers to join

The White House-led U.S. Digital Service is seeking to swell its ranks with more IT professionals, designers and project managers, said Mikey Dickerson, USDS administrator and federal deputy chief information officer.

Cybersecurity legislation needed for better public-private info sharing, says JCS's Dempsey

Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey said that cyber weaknesses in the private sector such as in civilian infrastructure and businesses are a serious threat to national security. And since the U.S. military depends on commercial networks, its defenses are still vulnerable.

 

US-UK digital partnership strengthens

The United States and the United Kingdom are strengthening their digital partnership with plans to work more closely on delivering digital services, expanding open government efforts and increasing information technology training and Internet access.

Spotlight: Obama urges Congress to act on cyber legislation in SOTU

President Barack Obama urged legislators to act on cybersecurity legislation during his Jan. 20 State of the Union address. 

GAO says NOAA not doing enough to address potential weather satellite data gap

A potential gap in weather satellite data – before the next polar-orbiting satellite is launched and operational – could occur sooner and last longer than anticipated.

As 2016 launch of new weather satellite nears, GAO sees risks in NOAA's program

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration continues to face cost overruns and delays in key program milestones as it readies the launch of the first of four next-generation weather satellites next year.

Expert panel: No software can target intelligence information to replace bulk data collection

No software exists now that would help the U.S. intelligence community better target and acquire information rather than conduct the bulk collection of electronic communications such as domestic telephone metadata, a National Research Council panel found.

Cloud business cases must address staff, says NOAA exec

There's been much discussion around the efficiencies to be gained from cloud computing – shuttering data centers and streamlining operations – but little talk of the freezing effect this end goal can have on the federal IT workforce. Cloud computing efforts would see stakeholder buy in improve significantly if there was some assurance that personnel would be protected, says one National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration IT executive.

Gov execs: 'Exit strategy' critical in federal cloud computing contracts

Interoperability and portability remain largely unaddressed issues among cloud services. And until all cloud computing services can ensure clients' data is portable and interoperable, federal chief information officers need to think about how they can get out of their cloud contracts, said federal executives speaking Jan. 15 at the Federal Cloud Computing Summit in Washington, D.C.

Proximity matters, even in the cloud, says DISA's top technology official

Having data available anytime, anywhere has long been touted as a major benefit of cloud computing, but a top Defense Information Systems Agency official said where data is physically located still matters.

Smaller companies exempt from using open-data format for financial reporting under House bill

Section 701 within the bill exempts emerging growth and other small companies from using Extensible Business Reporting Language, or XBRL, for financial statements and other periodic reporting that is required by the SEC.

GSA touts increase in SATCOM contracts, savings

Federal agencies are utilizing more commercial satellite communication services and turning to a joint General Services Administration-Defense Department contract vehicle to help them acquire solutions, according to a Jan. 9 post to the General Services Administration blog.

DISA releases security guidance in implementing, hosting cloud services for DoD agencies

The Defense Information Systems Agency Jan. 13 publicly released guidance that updates and codifies enhanced cybersecurity requirements for implementing and hosting cloud computing systems for certain types of sensitive Defense Department data.

Clapper, North Korean counterpart exchanged strong words just prior to Sony hack discovery

President Obama sent James Clapper to North Korea to bring back two imprisoned American citizens. During the mission, he met with the director of North Korea's Reconnaissance General Bureau, the organization that likely oversaw the cyberattack on Sony Pictures.

VistA marketing ramps up in advance of DoD EHR award

A marketing campaign aimed at raising the profile of the Veterans Affairs Department's open source electronic health record is in full swing. The Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture, or VistA, now has a website, Twitter account and LinkedIn group - just as the Defense Department considers a VistA proposal for its new EHR.