GSA splits security, contracting

GSA Office of Information Security

The General Services Administration has officially folded the contracting

functions of the Federal Technology Service's Office of Information Security

into FTS' Office of Information Technology Solutions. It has also created

a new office to focus solely on GSA's role in governmentwide information

security policy issues.

The operational functions will be brought together in an Information

Security Services Center, which will provide a staff of experts to help

agencies choose security needed for their applications and services. The

split will also enable FTS' contracting personnel to apply the expertise

of security contracting officers as security becomes integral to system

implementation, said Sallie MacDonald, former deputy associate commissioner

for information security.

Such expertise includes drawing on contracts such as Safeguard, for

products and services related to Presidential Decision Directive 63, and

Access Certificates for Electronic Services, for public-key infrastructure

solutions. PDD 63 requires the government to protect information systems

running the nation's critical infrastructure.

The new Office of Information Assurance and Critical Infrastructure

Protection falls on the policy side of GSA's service to civilian agencies.

GSA serves the government in many ways in the policy arena, including providing

cyber-attack warning and response through the Federal Computer Incident

Response Capability, MacDonald said.

Tom Burke, former associate commissioner for information security, left

FTS last month for industry, and MacDonald is serving as head of the new

policy office as well as continuing to lead the contracting group.

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