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FCW Insider: Aug. 6

'Unprecedented' challenges to safe, secure 2020 vote

Our election infrastructure is bending under the stress of multiple crises. Administrators say they are doing all they can to ensure it doesn't break.

SecDef: 'Murder of George Floyd was a wakeup call'

Defense Secretary Mark Esper said he's heard similar stories from service members across the branches, which spurred DOD to stand up three initiatives to improve diversity and inclusion.

Lawmakers seek red team testing of vulnerable grid networks

Senators want to craft authorities for federal agencies and private power infrastructure providers to allow more cybersecurity testing of energy grid network security.

Oversight chief holds on to seat

The chairwoman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee appears to have won her primary after six weeks of vote counting that was complicated by a proliferation of contested absentee ballots.

Quick Hits

***The Defense Department’s CIO, Dana Deasy, said one of the biggest lessons learned on the JEDI procurement was that “the narrative got away from us.”

“When we articulated early on that message of 10 years, $10 billion, what people did not hear in that message unfortunately was it could be up to 10 years and up to $10 billion, but we’re actually awarding a two-year contract at $1 million,” Deasy said during the virtual Forbes CIO Summit Aug. 5.

“The narrative got away from us. And then once you get a narrative that gets away from you, trying to recover is really, really difficult.”

Deasy also asserted that there was no political influence during the procurement process or source selection between Amazon Web Services and Microsoft, which won the contract last year. The CIO said the department is on schedule to re-announce the contract award in August, concluding a series of lawsuits, protests, and investigations into the process.

*** The Government Accountability Office got its semi-annual FITARA report card wrong. The U.S. Agency for International Development earned yet another A grade – not a B as was initially reported by the watchdog agency. The miscalculation had to do with the agency's FISMA score.

"USAID is proud of our leadership and innovation in the IT field. We are committed to increasing our mobility and efficiency so we can deliver on our global mission on behalf of the American people through improved management effectiveness," the agency said in a statement.

Posted by FCW Staff on Aug 06, 2020 at 2:12 AM


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