On November 14-15, 2017, NVTC hosted the second annual Capital Cybersecurity Summit at The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner. Grant Schneider, Acting Federal Chief Information Security Officer and Senior Director for Cybersecurity Policy at the National Security Council, provided keynote remarks on November 15.
Schneider discussed the focus areas outlined in the May 2017 Presidential Executive Order on cybersecurity aimed at informing cybersecurity policy on a national scale and strengthening the security of federal networks and critical infrastructure. Schneider shared how building a highly-skilled cybersecurity workforce is a national priority and stressed the need for more cybersecurity education, personal responsibility and empowerment for consumers.
View full video of Schneider’s remarks below as he covers the administration’s cybersecurity focus areas, the government’s transition towards shared services and the latest news around government IT modernization:
Stay tuned for more Capital Cybersecurity Summit content here on the blog!
Beginning in January 2018, the NVTC Tech Talent Initiative will host a series of webinars detailing how you can take advantage of the resources to support the relatively untapped talent pool of individuals with disabilities and Veterans. The webinar series will also address assistive technologies and disability etiquette. Members of your human resource, facilities operations, talent acquisition, diversity and inclusion, training, compliance, and legal departments are encouraged to participate.
Jan. 18: Recruiting, Hiring and Training Individuals with Disabilities 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Kathy West-Evans, M.P.A, CRC, Director of Business Relations for Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR), will offer information on affirmative action strategies to assist businesses in recruiting, hiring and training individuals with disabilities and Veterans into their workforce. Register here.
Feb. 15: Office Ergonomics, Universal Design and Assistive Technology 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Paula K. Marin, OTR/L, Assistive Technology Specialist with CPID, will discuss office ergonomics, universal design and assistive technology within the IT field. Register here.
March 15: Diversity at Work and Disability Etiquette 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
LaPearl Smith, Business Development Manager with the Department for Aging and Rehabilitation Services, and Diana McBride, Business Relation Specialist with the Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired, will provide information on diversity at work and disability etiquette. Register here.
Learn more about the Tech talent Initiative’s workforce resources and participation opportunities here.
Here on the NVTC Blog, we’re sharing original content and video from the second annual Capital Cybersecurity Summit that took place on Nov. 14-15, 2017 at The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner.
Did you know that 50 percent of cyber job openings in the nation are located in the Greater Washington region? Or that there are over 44,000 cyber job openings in the region?
Organizations are getting creative in sourcing cyber talent in maintain a competitive edge. In fact, the talent shortage is becoming a strategic priority for almost every organization in the cyber sector across the country.
The Capital Cybersecurity Summit’s engaging Unique Ways to Attract Top Cyber Talent panel explored innovative ways companies have overcome the cyber talent gap challenges in their organizations. Panelists included U.S. Cyber Challenge National Director Karen Evans, Northrop Grumman Mission Systems Manager, Strategic Analysis, Initiatives & Operations, Cyber & Intelligence Mission Solutions Brian Loggins, Ishpi Information Technologies, Inc. Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Girish Seshagiri and Cyber Human Capital LLC President and Founder Renee Brown Small. Monster Government Solutions Vice President of Global Strategy and Business DevelopmentSusan Fallon moderated.
Emerging from the discussion were unique ways organizations and HR professionals are sourcing – and upskilling – cyber talent. For example:
Ishpi Information Technologies has created a customized, “dual-model” apprenticeship program that combines specialized cybersecurity curriculum and on-the-job-training. The program also provides students assistance with security clearances beforegraduation, which helps to speed up the often long and tedious clearance process.
Northrop Grumman is partnering with the academic community, especially at the high school level with students interested in STEM, to source talent and engage students earlier in cybersecurity and computer science career paths. Northrop Grumman also offers cybersecurity scholarships at the high school and college level.
Cyber Human Capital’s Renee Brown Small shared that she has found success sourcing cyber talent by working with employees already in an organization who show interest in cybersecurity and upskilling them. Tapping into talent currently in an organization also helps with retention, as employees feel their skills and potential are valued, and that they are being challenged.
U.S. Cyber Challenge is bringing together stakeholders from the public and private sectors to host national cyber competitions to identify emerging cyber talent.
For more strategies and insights around recruiting cyber talent, view the full video from the panel below:
On Dec. 15, the NVTC Small Business and Entrepreneur Committee hosted an exciting Teaming, Partnering and Contracting event at the CIT Building in Herndon. The event focused on best practices for teaming in the government contracting space.
Sixteen companies from the region participated by talking with emerging businesses about how smaller companies can do business with established companies, what types of partners they are looking for and potential opportunities for teaming in the future. Participating companies interested in partnering, teaming and subcontracting with small businesses at the event included AMERICAN SYSTEMS, BAE Systems, Blue Canopy Jacobs, Booz Allen Hamilton, CALIBRE, CACI International, CGI Federal, CSRA, Grant Thornton, MITRE Corporation, Noblis, Northrop Grumman, NTT Data, PwC, SAIC and Serco.
The event also hosted a panel discussion featuring Aronson LLC Principal Consultant Tom Marcinko, The Bridge Host and Moderator Jim McCarthy and SAIC Senior Director, Small Business Development and Utilization Office Michael Townsend. The panel touched on various aspects of teaming in government contracting. Washington Business Journal Editor-At-Large Jennifer Nycz-Conner moderated.
Learn more about the Small Business & Entrepreneur Committee here.
At the second annual NVTC Capital Cybersecurity Summit, I was privileged to moderate an amazing panel discussion on “The State of Cloud Security and Compliance: Dispelling the Myth of Cloud Insecurity.”
What made it so amazing were the panelists who represented the “Big 3” of cloud providers: Susie Adams, Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft Federal; Matthew O’Connor, Security Program Manager for Google Cloud Platform, Google; and Doug Van Dyke, General Manager, Public Sector, Amazon Web Services.
Yes, these three companies are in fierce competition – but, they are also passionate advocates of cloud computing and how it can benefit public and private sector enterprises. That passion really showed throughout our wide-ranging conversation.
During the discussion, the panelists shared why federal agencies, which have been slower than the private sector in adopting cloud computing, despite its advantages in terms of security, cost-effectiveness and capabilities, are now finally picking up the pace on cloud adoption. Our panel noted that NIST Special Publication 800-171, with its emphasis on a common language, has increasingly helped decision-makers better understand the security standards required to operate in the cloud and thus enabled them to make more informed decisions.
Susie Adams of Microsoft stated that “The security paradigm has changed,” because “we are no longer just protecting assets that live behind our firewall…there is now a virtual edge you need to protect.” She added that “Identity is the new firewall, and devices are the new edge.” Another key point Susie made was that, “We are going to need to learn to protect data no matter where it is. If you can make that paradigm shift in your head, then you clearly see cloud providers can give you capabilities you didn’t have before.” I responded by noting that automation is key…it takes the work out of the manual security compliance process and puts it in the hands of the systems.
Currently, some 80 percent of federal IT spending is devoted to maintenance, often of outdated legacy IT systems, which is a massive information security risk. This is compared to 20-something percent for maintenance in much of the commercial sector, where businesses have much more readily adopted the cloud and other such innovative technologies. In our discussion on that issue, Doug Van Dyke of AWS observed that “There is a risk in not adopting these new technologies.” So if enterprises truly want to minimize risk, the cloud should be a means to do so. Susie Adams added that if agencies (and others) are not protecting their infrastructure, they are going to have a breach, and that is “why it’s important for the federal government to take advantage and invest in this new technology.”
Asked to identify what might impede or slow down cloud adoption, Google’s Matt O’Connor named two things – a massive breach that could lead to a more cautious posture vis-à-vis the cloud, and overly burdensome regulation, particularly by other nations. He stressed that governments around the world need to collaborate with, not dictate to, the private sector.
We had a very lively discussion on the responsibilities of customers hosting in the cloud environment. Doug Van Dyke said it is wrong for users to assume that security is someone else’s responsibility in the cloud, which he tied back to educating users. Matt O’Connor summed it up by saying that, in a shared security model, enterprises can look at their cloud security provider as a force multiplier and they should take advantage of what cloud providers have put in place, but they should not neglect their own responsibilities.
We concluded our session with a number of excellent questions from attendees, and Doug Van Dyke summed up the entire discussion best by saying we should mark this date, because we had AWS, Microsoft and Google “all in violent agreement” over the advantages of cloud computing and the need for continued focus on state of cloud security and compliance.
I agreed with that conclusion – to have business rivals all on the same page is memorable. But cloud security and compliance should be an area where there is strong consensus because they are now so intertwined. And I also believe cloud security providers should explore additional methods to further automate security and compliance processes for their customers.
Here’s a link to the entire session (see video below also). I highly recommend it to anyone exploring a move to the cloud who may have some lingering hesitation. It will be worth your while.