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Tight defense budgets could yield better cybersecurity, information sharing

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May 26, 2011
Cyber Security, FedCyber Wire
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via Federal Computer Week

The Defense Department’s ongoing budget struggles could lead to streamlined cybersecurity efforts and better shared capabilities across the military services, defense officials said.

The hundreds of billions of dollars slated to be shaved from defense spending will push DOD toward creating a joint infrastructure for the military services, said Mark Orndorff, director of mission assurance and network operations at the Defense Information Systems Agency.

Speaking as part of a panel discussion sponsored by AFCEA-NOVA in Arlington, Va., on May 20, Orndorff said budget problems are a great motivator for forcing the services to work together on IT capabilities rather than having redundant programs in each military branch.

“On the positive side, the budget cuts force us to reassess how to spend [on cyber]…and it forces a dialogue at the joint level,” Orndorff said. “We can prioritize better and focus on key things and core competencies. On the negative side, we’re forced to make choices, and things like insider threats fall by the wayside when they ought not to.”

Budget shortages will also promote efficiencies and innovative planning that could improve cybersecurity and information sharing, Orndorff said today in follow-up comments.

Standardization — essential to implementing enterprisewide services — will be improved as organizations jointly coordinate security, and that will help clear the way for efforts such as enterprise e-mail, already under way in the Army and DISA. Orndorff said enterprise e-mail is an example of capabilities that face hurdles in broader implementation because of the disparity in individual security systems, such as firewalls policies.

Continued here.