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The latest on TIC 3.0

The Trusted Internet Connections program team is in the final stretch of finalizing TIC 3.0 guidance for how federal agencies should connect to the greater outside internet, the head of the program at the Department of Homeland Security said Thursday. Speaking at CyberTalks, Director Sean Connelly described the items remaining on the TIC team's docket, including the release of an Overlay Handbook and Traditional TIC and Branch Office use case documents. Dave Nyczepir has the story.

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What about the contracting officers?

While controversy abounds in how the Department of Defense will ready its contracting base for the forthcoming shift to the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) standards, little has been said about the adjustments necessary for the contracting officers across the military who will support those contractors. Stacy Bostjanick, DOD's director of the CMMC standard, shed some light this week on the work underway to prepare DOD's acquisition workforce for the new standards, including holding bi-weekly meetings with the services’ acquisition leaders to get COs ready for the changes. Jackson spoke to Bostjanick during an SNG Live panel.

Census Bureau claims data processing is going swimmingly

Census officials are touting the bureau's IT systems as they move forward in processing response data, now that the 2020 survey is closed. The bureau began that process prior to ending self-response and field data collection operations Oct. 15, and so far, IT systems are performing well, top officials said Wednesday. "[O]ur first reaction is some of those systems are actually running faster than we had anticipated and with less errors and less problems than we had anticipated in our plan," said Al Fontenot, associate director for decennial programs. Dave has this one too.

Beyond multi-factor authentication

The Department of Veterans Affairs has had to get serious about user authentication during the pandemic and move to expanded telework. Not only has the department broadened its use of multi-factor authentication, but now it's looking to evolve beyond that, CISO Paul Cunningham said Thursday during FedTalks. Cunningham’s comments came after the VA recently suffered a breach in a financial system that comprised information on at least 46,000 veterans. The breach originated with malicious actors using “social engineering techniques” and exploiting “authentication protocols” to gain access to the system. More on the VA's cyber developments.

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