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FCW : September 30, 2013
CRITICAL READ WHAT: A guide on federal acqui- sition by the IBM Center for the Business of Government. WHY: The report answers eight key questions about federal procurement and designates three acquisition challenges facing leaders: navigating the regulatory and oversight land- scape, mitigating acquisition risks through contract design and improving the acquisition workforce. VERBATIM: "Many leaders outside the federal procure- ment system see it as a mys- terious black box, the rules of which are explained by pro- curement staff and attorneys. But the effective delivery of government programs often rises and falls on whether a contractor understands the goals of the program for which they are provid- ing goods and services, and performs effectively based on a procurement process that translates goals into require- ments, resource expecta- tions and metrics." FULL REPORT: businessofgovernment.org 10 September 30, 2013 FCW.COM Trending of Internet users have taken steps to avoid observation online, a Pew survey found 55 percent The National Institute of Standards and Technology s draft cybersecurity framework is a stepping stone to an October deadline for a preliminary plan and ultimately to a " nal" document due in February 2014 under President Barack Obama s cybersecurity execu- tive order. To achieve that goal, NIST contin- ues to depend on industry s and the public s involvement in creating comprehensive guidelines. The latest draft was released Aug. 28, just weeks ahead of NIST s fourth workshop in Dallas. It is a pattern NIST has come to rely on in the cre- ation of the cybersecurity framework, said Adam Sedgewick, NIST s senior IT policy adviser. The agency releases informa- tion and asks for feedback, it presents that feedback at a public workshop to discuss key issues, and then it posts the information from those discussions online to help inform the next iteration of the framework. "We ve structured the whole 240 days [speci ed in the executive order] to try to maximize the amount of pub- lic engagement and feedback we could get," Sedgewick said. Through that process, NIST of cials have been able to present the most comprehensive draft framework yet --- one that eshes out the core of the guidance and proposed metrics for assessing an organization s cyberse- curity standing. The Aug. 28 version builds on a more skeletal iteration, and the forthcoming versions will continue that pattern of building on one another using feedback from stakeholders. "The process lets us see the gap areas and common themes," Sedge- wick said. "Are we re ecting the com- ments right, and is this the right path?" Between now and October, archi- tects of the framework will have dis- cussions about a range of key issues, including: • Whether the framework adequately addresses civil liberties and privacy. • How it can enable cost-effective implementation. • How it can provide the right tools to help senior executives and boards of directors understand risk manage- ment. • How to ensure that the framework is inclusive of and not disruptive to the cybersecurity practices an organization already has in place. "We hope to really begin validating this docu- ment so we can continue to improve it with time," Sedgewick said. He added that those who could not attend the Dallas workshop can submit comments via email at cyber- firstname.lastname@example.org. After NIST issues the October preliminary framework, a formal comment period will be posted in the Federal Register. But don t expect any downtime between October and the February deadline. Dialogue will be ongoing, Sedgewick said, and even though the " nal" version of the framework is due in February, it will continue to evolve. "We re coming to the stage where we re looking at implementation and we get to see what it looks like when it s put into practice," he said. "We don t see February as the end. We see Febru- ary as another step in the process, and we will continue to work with other agencies on other pieces of the execu- tive order." --- Amber Corrin NIST's cybersecurity framework depends on you Trevor L. Brown The Ohio State University A Guide for Agency Leaders on Federal Acquisition Major Challenges Facing Government Acquisition Series Adam Sedgewick
September 15, 2013
October 30, 2013