Security and data ownership: Old issues in a new wineskin

Some things never change

Security and data center ownership were big issues 15 years ago when the federal government attempted to move agencies to consolidate data centers and share information technology services.

Guess what? These are still concerns today, as the Office of Management and Budget attempts once again to achieve IT operation efficiencies and cost-savings through data center consolidation.

But this time around there is a difference, said Mark Hamilton, program manager of infrastructure technology services within the Justice Departments’ Justice Management Division.

Related coverage:

The political hurdle to data center consolidation

Systems were separate entities and didn’t interact with each other 15 years ago. Since then The National Institute of Standards and Technology guidelines have provided a consistent sense of security requirements that can be applied across an agency, he noted. He spoke Sept. 16 during a panel at a Data Center Optimization conference in Washington, D.C. sponsored by AFFIRM and the Government Information Technology Executive Council.

Data ownership is a big issue, especially because of the move toward service-oriented architecture, which decouples large applications and breaks business functions and processes into discrete services. The business owners are open to having a dialogue about how the amalgamation of information systems can save money, Hamilton said. But they still have concerns of ownership rights as data is segmented within virtual systems, he said.


About the Author

Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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Reader comments

Mon, Sep 20, 2010 J.D.Bailey

Data ownership is a small and obvious issue. Those that create the information (science/engineering… data, legal/learning… content) are always the literal (legal/virtual) owners. Information Management (IM) with any other owner is .Com/.Gov/.Mil hierarchy-agenda folly. SOA is not intended for decoupling information ownership. SOA “Services” are not the large applications. “Services” are apt and agile information sharing-value that transit SOA for shared business functions and processes. SOA is about discrete services (not architecture). SOA is about delivering authenticated, assured, and accurate discrete information products upon request as a service. SOA and Structured Information (XML, GEIA…) standards allow businesses to have “Open” dialogue for planning, organizing, and operating with identical aggregated information sets/assets. The aggregation of structured information under data/content/… appropriate standards using cloud/mobile-computing and virtualization will provide affordable, apt, and agile information collaboration. The amalgamation of information systems under one or few colossal OpSys, applications, architectures (IMO) is another stove-pipe silo or money-pit for .Gov/.Mil/,Com. IM, IT, IS…. Also, SOA, cloud/mobile-computing applications, and virtualized infrastructure does not segment/fragment information. IM governance requires information ownership be specified, authenticated, and associated with the information creator/developer…author.

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