A new cybersecurity dashboard will cause controversy because critics will raise concerns about tipping the enemy off to which agencies have the poorest security measures in place. Dashboards will also pop up outside of IT, showing the public how well major non-IT projects are going and what's being done to remedy problems there, but just like in IT, it will be a tough slog to get agencies to effectively use them. Finally, all these dashboards will be used as fodder for budgeting for 2011 and 2012.
5. IT Procurement May See Some Tentative, Incomplete Reform
Federal government IT procurement is looking to get an overhaul. There are several efforts working their way through Congress, the Office of Management and Budget and the Department of Defense to make significant changes to the way agencies buy and deploy IT.
For too long, agencies have bought IT like they buy battleships, requiring an arduous multi-stage process that includes unnecessary or inefficient steps, causing far too many agencies to be generations behind the private and consumer sectors by the time they have a system or service up and running.
However, IT procurement reform is strewn with obstacles, foremost among them cybersecurity and transparency. While a no-bid contract and an on-the-fly installation might be quicker, it can hide the details of government spending and take security shortcuts. Policy-making bodies will struggle with these questions but will release some new guidance and policies that address many of them, while a few like DISA's CertificationForge will begin making inroads in automating the certification and accreditation process.
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