FCW Insider

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FCW Insider: Aug. 7

Sens. Mark Warner and Jack Reed want assurances from Defense Secretary Mark Esper that partisan pressure isn't impinging on the Pentagon's ability to run its cloud acquisition program. Adam Mazmanian takes a look at the increasingly bruising politics of cloud.

Steve Kelman is a fan of evidence-based government, but he also knows that data can be used to mislead, obfuscate and confound. In his latest blog post, Kelman argues that risk factors about shady use of data are easy to spot.

An oversight report states that the Department of Agriculture may have skirted appropriations laws in its push to move two research agencies from Washington, D.C. to the Kansas City region. The report lands amid controversy surrounding the true purpose of the plan to move the agencies. Adam has more.

The inspector general at IRS wants the agency to ditch its error prone and largely manual process for examining amended individual tax returns and allow users to submit their changes through the same streamlined e-filing portal used for original returns. Derek B. Johnson has more.

Rather than getting to the point of no return, David Canellos argues in a FCW commentary, agencies should manage cybersecurity through preventative action, technological excellence, hygiene and training. Canellos, president and CEO at Ericom Software, advocates approaches that are browser-agnostic, work with all devices and operating systems and are clientless, making roll-out and updating simple.

Quick Hits

*** Christopher Porter, CTO for global cybersecurity policy at FireEye, was tapped to serve as national intelligence officer for cyber in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Porter also was a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council.

According to an ODNI job description, the major duties of the position are to orchestrate and direct communitywide mid- and long-term strategic analysis around cybersecurity, advise the DNI on cyber issues, develop the analytic portion of the Unified Intelligence Strategy and brief senior policymakers across the intelligence community and the broader government.

"It's difficult to imagine anyone with deeper subject-matter expertise on the evolving threats we face in cyberspace and the implications they have for public safety, national security, and geopolitics," Atlantic Council President and CEO Frederick Kempe said.

Intelligence Online first reported on Porter's appointment in July.

*** Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Mike Rogers (R-Ala.), the chairman and ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee, are seeking testimony and contact information from the proprietor of the website 8chan, which hosted racist and extremist content and message boards and has been used by mass murderers and terrorists to post manifestos purporting to explain their crimes. A racist screed from the perpetrator of the El Paso terror attack on Aug. 3 was posted to 8chan before the shooting.

"Americans deserve to know what, if anything, you, as owner and operator, are doing to address the proliferation of extremist content on 8chan," the lawmakers wrote to Jim Watkins, a U.S. Army veteran who runs 8chan from the Philippines.

*** The Department of Homeland Security is looking for artificial intelligence solutions to help contracting officers use a key government vendor database, according to an Aug. 5 solicitation posted on FedBizOpps. The agency wants a tool that can identify relevant information from the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System to help streamline the contracting process and alleviate administrative workloads. Contracting officers are required under law to evaluate past performance when making acquisition decisions.

Posted on Aug 07, 2019 at 2:25 AM


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