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FCW Insider: June 28

U.S. government research used to drive private sector innovation, but that relationship has been upended in recent decades. In a new FCW commentary, Deloitte's William D. Eggers and Max Meyers say that federal agencies should adapt to this dynamic with external engagement using the corporate venture-capital model to take advantage of innovation in the commercial sector.

Policymakers and experts know that paperless DRE voting machines are confined to a small number of states, but new survey results demonstrate just how concentrated the problem is. Derek B. Johnson reports on a study from the Election Assistance Commission that shows that three states are responsible for half of all paperless e-voting machines.

Border sensors and a common tech platform are keys to border security, not a wall, said Rep. Will Hurd at a security conference. The Texas Republican represents a district that is home to 800 miles of U.S.-Mexico border. Mark Rockwell explains.

Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.) worries that the lack of permanent leadership at the Pentagon is putting the U.S. at risk -- even in space. Lauren C. Williams has more.

Quick Hits

*** The House of Representatives passed a $4.6 billion emergency supplemental appropriation to provide funds for a humanitarian and law enforcement response to the influx of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border on June 27, just before leaving for the July 4 recess. The bill was passed by the Senate and is expected to be signed into law. One provision in the legislation extends the authority of the Department of Homeland Security to issue "other transaction authority" contracts to vendors for rapid prototyping and development of new technologies. The Silicon Valley Investment Program at DHS relies on OTA. That authority had lapsed at DHS as a result of the funding bill passed in February to end the partial government shutdown.

*** This week, the General Services Administration posted and withdrew a cloud security solicitation dubbed the FedRAMP Ideation Challenge. The challenge was designed to crowdsource input on how to speed up cloud security authorizations while reducing cost. According to GSA, the FedRAMP program office still plans to seek industry feedback on cloud authorization and the opportunity will be reposted in the coming weeks.

*** The Pentagon's Defense Innovation Unit is looking for advanced deception capabilities in a new solicitation released June 26. The solicitation seeks a prototype solution "that goes beyond traditional networked honeypots" and provides both cloud and on-premise decoy networks to fool intruders as well as quarantine and forensic capabilities. Submissions from vendors are due July 12.

Posted on Jun 28, 2019 at 2:10 AM


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