Cloud

GSA set to approve first fast-tracked CSPs

Shutterstock image: cloud network, concept.

The first participants in the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program’s fast-track approval process for cloud service providers will graduate in the coming weeks, a top FedRAMP official said.

FedRAMP began testing a new accelerated process with three providers -- Unisys' Secure Private Cloud for Government, Microsoft's Customer Relationship Management and 18F's Cloud.gov -- back in the spring.

Claudio Belloli, FedRAMP program manager for cybersecurity, told FCW at a GovLoop cybersecurity conference on Aug. 23 that Microsoft's CRM will probably be the first to be approved via FedRAMP Accelerated. The others will definitely be cleared in the fall, he added.

Under FedRAMP Accelerated, CSPs must have a third-party assessment organization conduct an initial capabilities assessment before diving into detailed documentation. If the 3PAO gives the cloud service passing marks and the FedRAMP team agrees, the CSP is declared "FedRAMP Ready."

FedRAMP's approval process has sometimes frustrated CSPs and agencies alike, largely because of the time and cost involved in securing a provisional authority to operate. Before FedRAMP Accelerated was launched, the fastest approval took five months. GSA officials had said the average review time was nine to 18 months.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a senior staff writer at FCW, whose beat focuses on acquisition, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Energy.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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