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FCW Insider: Sept. 15

VA reports data breach affecting 46,000 veterans

Scammers trying to divert payments for medical care compromised an online system belonging to the Financial Services Center.

Tax deferral plan steams ahead

Despite opposition in Congress and skepticism from employee unions, the administration is going ahead with a mandatory tax deferral scheme for federal employees and the uniformed military.

House bill aims to strengthen digital ID

Legislation proposed in the House would tap the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Department of Homeland Security in new effort to help set national digital identifier capabilities.

Re-imagining the small-business mentor-protege model

Steve Kelman looks at the efforts of a non-traditional contractor to bring new firms into the fold.

From weapons to workforce, digital centricity is the Air Force's new motto

Air Force leadership highlights the need for digitally fluent personnel and digital manufacturing during the 2020 Air, Space, Cyber conference.

Quick Hits

*** The White House has nominated Air Force Maj. Gen. Robert Skinner to lead the Defense Information Systems Agency. Skinner, who is now the director for Command, Control, Communications, and Cyber, J6, headquarters at Indo-Pacific Command, would be promoted to lieutenant general and assigned as director of the and commander for the Joint Forces Headquarters-Department of Defense Information Network. If the nomination goes through, Skinner would replace Vice Adm. Nancy Norton who has held the positions since 2017.

*** The Office of Personnel Management is looking to extend the period of term appointments for certain positions in science, technology, engineering and medicine to up to 10 years – up from the current maximum duration of four years. In a Sept. 14 Federal Register notice, OPM announced it was seeking comment on ways to extend hiring flexibilities for agencies looking to hire in support of "projects and organizations specifically funded by Congress." The personnel agency is seeking comment through Nov. 10.

*** A coming rule change in the Federal Acquisition Regulation would codify vendor feedback mechanisms piloted under the Acquisition 360 effort. The proposed revisions include incorporating pre-award survey questions that give prospective vendors an opportunity to weigh in on acquisition efforts, including the clarity of requirements and the management of the solicitation process. The change appears in the Federal Register on Sept. 15.

Posted by FCW Staff on Sep 15, 2020 at 2:33 AM


  • Cybersecurity
    cybersecurity (Rawpixel/Shutterstock.com)

    CMMC clears key regulatory hurdle

    The White House approved an interim rule to mandate defense contractors prove they adhere to existing cybersecurity standards from the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

  • Comment
    cloud (Phaigraphic/Shutterstock.com)

    A call for visionary investment

    Investing in IT modernization is not an either-or proposition, Rep. Connolly writes. This pandemic has presented Congress a choice: We can put our head in the sand and pretend these failures didn't happen, or we can take action to be prepared for the future.

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