NIST Updating Catalog of Controls

Eric Chabrow,,  Wednesday, February 29, 2012

More than a year in the making, the National Institute of Standards and Technology issued Feb. 28 an initial public draft updating one of its premier special publications, SP 800-53: Security and Privacy Controls for the Federal Information Systems and organizations, which incorporates expanded privacy controls and addresses new threats that were unheard of when NIST issued revision 3 in 2009.

Harris Scraps Secure Public Cloud Service

J. Nicholas Hoover, InformationWeek,  Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Systems integrator Harris Corporation announced Monday that it plans to shutter a secure public cloud computing service it began offering just last year, citing customers' preferences to keep "mission-critical" applications on premises.

Homeland Security Tackles Agile Development

J. Nicholas Hoover, InformationWeek,  Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Department of Homeland Security is increasingly embracing agile development, several top DHS IT officials said Tuesday at the agency's 2012 IT Industry Day in Washington, D.C. The move is part of a larger effort at DHS to ensure that IT projects are delivered quickly, on time, and on budget. "Our reputation for delivering on time and on budget--let's just say we haven't historically gotten an A grade for that," DHS CIO Richard Spires said at the event.

Audio: Federal CIOs discuss the fiscal 2013 budget proposal

Molly Bernhart Walker, FierceGovernmentIT,  Monday, February 27, 2012

Federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel and other federal CIOs spoke Jan. 24 during an event hosted in Maryland by AFCEA Bethesda. The event began with almost an hour of remarks from VanRoekel. VanRoekel said his primary goals from 2012 will be the shared-first and future-first initiatives, maximizing return on investment for federal IT spend, improving the IT acquisition and management workforce and cybersecurity.

DARPA, MIT Research A Self-Healing Cloud

Elizabeth Montalbano, InformationWeek,  Monday, February 27, 2012

The Department of Defense (DoD) is funding research to create a cloud computing environment that can heal itself after a cyber attack. Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) are working on a new system that would help a cloud identify an attack and recover from it almost instantaneously, according to MIT.

RSA Conference 2012: Former NSA director says secure clouds can't come fast enough

George V. Hulme, Computerworld,  Monday, February 27, 2012

At the third annual Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) summit today, Michael McConnell, former director of the National Security Agency, urged the audience of 1,200 security experts to do what they can to help build trusted cloud computing systems."I've a message. Drive this technology, and drive the standards to force change. The economics of the cloud are so compelling they can't be denied. We have to get the security aspects right," McConnell said.

Agencies must set rules around cloud vendors' access to data, report says

Joseph Marks, Nextgov,  Friday, February 24, 2012

The federal government is behind many states and businesses in its adoption of cloud computing, but it is on track to be one of the largest purchasers of cloud storage and could have an outsized effect on what commerce looks like in the still developing industry, a primer on best practices for government cloud contracts argues.

White House Releases ‘Privacy Bill of Rights’ for Consumers

Sarah Rich, Government Technology,  Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Barack Obama administration released on Thursday, Feb. 23, a new set of voluntary guidelines called the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights in response to growing concern about how companies are using online data they collect from citizens.

Interior says cloud e-mail data must be stored in US

Rutrell Yasin, Government Computer News,  Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Interior Department has revised its cloud e-mail cloud procurement to specify that data must stored in the U.S. or its territories. Interior officials want to standardize all 88,000 DOI personnel on a common e-mail and collaboration platform to give all employees improved communication and collaboration tools. The department posted a request for proposal Feb. 7, seeking potential vendors to provide cloud e-mail and collaboration services.

Anonymous gets NSA's attention, promises regular Friday attacks

Kevin McCaney, Government Computer News,  Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The hacktivist collective Anonymous, whose website attacks have often been viewed by security experts as annoyances rather than serious threats, could be stepping up its game. Gen. Keith Alexander, director of the National Security Agency, is concerned that Anonymous could have the ability to attack the United States’ power grid within two years, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.