Fedwire Briefs

CIA forms IT firm

The CIA last week announced the creation of a commercial firm to conduct cutting-edge research on how information technologies can transform the way the intelligence community operates.

The new firm, In-Q-It, will act as a bridge between the intelligence community and the IT industry to form partnerships and foster cooperation on high-tech research projects of interest to industry and the national security community. The goal, according to a statement by CIA director George Tenet, is to tap into the expertise of the IT industry's best and brightest to help the CIA keep pace with the rapid pace of technological change.

The initial research areas that the new firm will tackle include the use of the Internet, information security, knowledge generation and distributed architectures.

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Navy plans to outsource N/MCI

The Navy intends to outsource nearly its entire information technology infrastructure for all Navy and Marine units and bases in a mammoth project that industry sources value at more than $2 billion.

Last week, the Navy formally kicked off the contract for the domestic Navy/Marine Corps Intranet, with the draft acquisition documents stating that the service intends to outsource its domestic IT infrastructure, which with more than 500,000 seats will make it the largest outsourcing project in the world.

According to the documents, the Navy "intends to develop a long-term relationship with the commercial sector," with industry providing IT as a service, not a commodity, to Navy and Marine Corps users in the United States, excluding Alaska.

WEB EXTRA: For the complete article, go to www.fcw.com/extra.

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GSA awards second ACES pact

The General Services Administration last week announced the second award under its Access Certificates for Electronic Services contract to Operational Research Consultants Inc., an 8(a) company based in Chesapeake, Va.

ACES will provide a governmentwide contract for agencies to procure public-key infrastructure technology and services, including digital certificates that will encrypt information sent across the Internet and authenticate the identity of users.

GSA awarded the first ACES contract last month to Digital Signature Trust Co.

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Bill would increase NIST role

Federal and industry experts last week told a House panel that a security bill would help agencies secure their systems against cyberthreats.

The Computer Security Enhancement Act of 1999 would increase the role and resources of the National Institute of Standards and Technology to establish security guidelines and coordinate civilian agencies' security efforts.

The bill is similar to one the House passed in the last session, but the bill did not make it to the Senate floor. Several changes to the bill reflect the need for more technology-neutral solutions and an increasing number of security policies.

WEB EXTRA: For the complete article, go to www.fcw.com/extra.

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Four certified by JFMIP

The Joint Financial Management Improvement Program last week announced the first four vendors certified under its new testing process for federal financial management systems: American Management Systems Inc., Digital Systems Group Inc., Oracle Corp. and PeopleSoft Inc.

As of Oct. 1, agencies can buy financial management systems from JFMIP-certified vendors on any federal contract. The General Services Administration's mandatory Financial Management Systems Services schedule expired Sept. 30.

Information on the test results is available on the JFMIP Knowledgebase at www.financenet.gov/fed/jfmip.

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FFMIA compliance lacking

Sen. Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, last week released a report indicating that many federal agencies still do a poor job of managing financial information, despite a 1996 law designed to promote uniformity, timeliness and accuracy in records management.

The law, the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act, requires regular audits of financial information at 24 major federal agencies. The report, compiled by the General Accounting Office, found that agencies have become more aware of their financial management weaknesses but that compliance with FFMIA has not increased over the past year.

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