Navy to join DMS centers under NMCI

Navy officials plan to consolidate 16 centers that provide regional coverage for the Defense Message System and locate them near six Navy Marine Corps Intranet network operations centers, according to a program official.

"One of the areas we are looking at are the DMS local control centers and how we should use them under NMCI," said Scott Henderson, NMCI information assurance division head at the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (Spawar). Speaking at a June 26 press conference, Henderson added that it's reasonable to locate them near the six NMCI network operations centers.

DMS is a $1.6 billion program designed to provide writer-to-reader message services for classified and top-secret information to all Defense users at their desktops.

The Navy operates 16 local control centers and four area control centers for DMS directory services, management, message transfer, security and user support, said Richard Williamson, a Spawar spokesman in San Diego.

Henderson did not say what would happen to the four DMS area control centers — in Norfolk, Va.; Oahu, Hawaii; San Diego; and London — that manage DMS in separate geographic areas.

Officials from NMCI lead contractor Electronic Data Systems Corp. and the Navy are close to opening the first two NMCI network operations centers at Norfolk and San Diego, said Capt. Chris Christopher, Navy Department deputy program executive officer for information technology. The other network operations centers will be at Puget Sound, Wash.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Oahu; and Quantico, Va.

Like the rest of the Defense Department, the Navy must switch over to DMS from the existing Automatic Digital Network for secure communications by Sept. 30, 2002.

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