FAA smart card pilot delayed

The Federal Aviation Administration has delayed a pilot program for smart cards but is moving forward on several other procurements, according to a top official.

The FAA plans to release a screening information request this month for Broad Information Technology Services II, a $1.3 billion contract set aside for small businesses. In order to qualify as a prime contractor, a company must have total revenue of $36 million in the past three years. An award is expected in June.

In February, the FAA should release screening information requests for traffic flow modernization and telecommunications support. The jobs are worth $110 million and $135 million, respectively.

"It's a large budget for us," FAA chief information officer Daniel Mehan said, speaking at an Input executive breakfast today. "It's a large mission we're trying to accomplish."

In the near future, the agency also will implement scanning software as part of its cybersecurity effort. "That will be a very active thing for us this year, to get that scanning going," Mehan said.

The FAA is interested in mobile solutions to cybersecurity, public-key infrastructure and examples of enterprise architectures driving investments, he added.

As for smart cards, the agency hopes to get a pilot project under way this year, Mehan said. The FAA has worked out requirements for the program in conjunction with the Transportation Security Administration, he said.

TSA is preparing to launch two regional pilot projects for its Transportation Worker Identification Credential system, which will provide employees at airports, ports, railways and other locations with secure access to buildings and systems.

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