Congress

More money for cyber in 2018 NDAA

 

The House Armed Services Committee wants to allocate more money for cyber scholarships and the NATO Cooperative Cyber Center of Excellence in the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act.

The Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities also wants to give the Department of Defense the ability to make greater use of other transactions authorities according to a markup of the act released on June 21.

According to the summary of the markup, the OTA provision aims to "improve clarity for how the Department of Defense makes determinations when higher level authority is needed to sign off on a specific OTA award," with the goal of reducing the number of higher-level signatures needed.

Also related to acquisition, the proposed legislation would give the DOD CIO responsibility for "policy, oversight, guidance, and coordination for supply chain risk management activities," related to DOD IT.

The committee states that it has concerns about DOD's ability to manage an increasingly globalized IT supply chain and it calls for greater use of automated intelligence feeds, including from commercial intelligence providers, as a means of analyzing supply chain risk.

The markup also establishes a $10 million DOD Cyber Scholarship Program, with five percent set aside for the pursuit of associate degrees as an additional effort to address challenges in recruiting and retaining cyber personnel.

The markup includes a provision the Armed Services Committee recently filed as a standalone bill that would require the secretary of defense to notify congressional defense committees of sensitive cyber operations or the review of any cyber capability intended to be used as a weapon.

"Oversight of sensitive activities in other domains is a core function of this subcommittee and we are now well poised to pave the way for overseeing these operations in cyberspace as well," said subcommittee Vice Chair Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the markup hearing.

He also lauded the legislation's provision allocating $5 million to NATO's Cooperative Cyber Center of Excellence.

"Strengthening collaboration with NATO allies in cyberspace in other domains to counter Russian aggression is a hallmark of this year's bill, although I believe there's still more that we can do," he said.

About the Author

Sean Carberry is a former FCW staff writer who focused on defense, cybersecurity and intelligence.


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