Texas works on P2P policy

Fearing that state computer systems will be jeopardized, Texas state technology officials are planning to restrict the use of peer-to-peer file-sharing applications among agencies, departments, boards and commissions.

Gov. Rick Perry issued an executive order April 5 directing the state Department of Information Resources to devise a policy prohibiting the unauthorized or illegal use of such software programs and also permitting their use for government business and law enforcement purposes that won’t pose a risk to computer systems.

Peer-to-peer (P2P) software, such as Napster, Kazaa and Grokster, allows Internet users to search, download and share files -- usually music, videos, software and other types of media files -- directly from one another’s computers. As opposed to a traditional client-server model, P2P networks are composed of nodes that serve as clients and servers to other nodes on the network.

Perry’s executive order states that “without adequate protections and procedures in place, the use of peer-to-peer file-sharing software can result in the presence of viruses and malicious programs on state information management system computers and networks, and consume network resources, resulting in the creation of inefficiencies in the performance of those systems.”

Any statewide policy, however, would not apply to the legislative and judicial branches or to the state’s constitutional officers, although they could adopt it, the executive order states.

Other state governments have enacted similar P2P use policies.

Featured

  • Defense
    DOD photo by Senior Airman Perry Aston  11th Wing Public Affairs

    How DOD's executive exodus could affect tech modernization

    Back-to-back resignations raise concerns about how things will be run without permanent leadership in key areas from policy to tech development.

  • Budget
    cybersecurity (vs148/Shutterstock.com)

    House's DHS funding bill would create public-private cyber center

    The legislation would give $2.25 billion to DHS' cyber wing and set up an integrated cybersecurity center with other agencies, state and local governments and private industry.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.