Cloud Computing, Cyber Security, IT Security, Security, Technology

GAO: Agencies face cyber risk in building access systems

The Homeland Security Department may have its hands full protecting the nation’s infrastructure from terrorist attacks, but the Government Accountability Office said the department needs to do much more to improve the cybersecurity of access and control systems in the thousands of buildings it operates.

In that area, DHS is only at square one, according to a recent GAO report.

According to the report, “no one at DHS is assessing or addressing cyber risk to building and access control systems particularly at the nearly 9,000 federal facilities protected by the Federal Protective Service (FPS) as of October 2014.”

GAO: Agencies face cyber risk in building access systems

Moreover, the report said, DHS lacks a strategy that “defines the problem, identifies roles and responsibilities … and identifies a methodology for assessing this cyber risk.”

The Interagency Security Committee, the division within DHS responsible for physical security standards for nonmilitary facilities, has not incorporated policies related to cyber threats in building and access control systems.  The ISC attributes this failure to recent incidents of active shooters and workplace violence, which it has deemed a priority over cyber threats.

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Cloud Computing, Cyber Security, IT Security, Security, Technology

Cyber campus, St. E’s funded in 2015

The General Services Administration has money in 2015 to build a civilian cyber campus and to continue development of the Department of Homeland Security’s campus headquarters project in Washington, according to its administrator.

Dan Tangherlini at microphone

The funding was included in the fiscal 2015 omnibus spending bill enacted just before Congress adjourned for the year in December, GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini said in a Jan. 6 statement.

The law, he said, includes $144 million in funding for the next phase of the $4.5 billion DHS headquarters consolidation project at St. Elizabeths campus in southeast Washington, D.C. The campus plan has a rocky history. At a House hearing last September, the project came under fire from lawmakers for what they said were extravagant details and “cushy” features such as Brazilian hardwood paneling in some buildings. A Government Accountability Office study released at the hearing said DHS hadn’t overseen the project adequately and that funding should be limited.

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