Blogs

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Secure Elections Act delayed    Markup for the Secure Elections Act (S. 2593) was scheduled for August 22 but was postponed after several secretaries of state voiced concern with the bill, noting the lack of funding and the White House also commented on the stalled measure saying they would not support legislation with "inappropriate mandates" that moves power or funding from states to Washington.  State plans for election security spending released    The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) released information on how states are planning to spend the $380 million in HAVA grants awarded earlier this year. 36.3 percent of funds ...
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There's just something about the term "artificial intelligence" that sounds futuristic and far out. Maybe it's those sci-fi movies of years past, or the fear of being taken over by robots in the future. But if you look around at our daily lives, AI has just become a regular part of it. From Alexa, to Siri, to our doorbells and our thermostats, suddenly AI is everywhere. And it's happening fast. In 2017 when NASCIO asked state CIOs "What emerging IT area will be most impactful in the next 3-5 years?" only 29 percent chose AI / Machine Learning. In 2018 (soon to be released), 58 percent chose that same answer. The response doubled in just one year. During this ...
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The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) have released a joint report and supporting case studies identifying how five states - Georgia, Michigan, New Jersey, Virginia, and Washington - use laws, policies, structures, and processes to help govern cybersecurity as an enterprise-wide, strategic issue across state government and other public and private sector stakeholders.  Every day, states and territories rely on networks and systems to ensure continuity of commerce and delivery of mission critical services. These systems are at risk of disruption from cyber attacks from adversaries ...
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NASCIO in the House  NASCIO President Bo Reese testified before the House Oversight, Intergovernmental Subcommittee on July 18 th  about the impact of federal regulations on state IT. Reese spoke about the federal regulatory impact to IT consolidation and cybersecurity. Click  here  to read the testimony. FirstNet undergoing audit  The U.S. Dept. of Commerce Inspector General notified FirstNet CEO Mike Poth on May 3 rd  that they would be  initiating an audit  of FirstNet's oversight role regarding the contract to develop the nationwide public safety broadband network. LA-RICS assets to AT&T  LTE ...
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NASCIO has embarked on a new initiative based on work started in the state of Texas and Georgia.  The work in these states has been ongoing for over twelve years.  The initiative in Georgia started about 2006 with the state CIO who was in place at that time, Patrick Moore.  Since then, much has been learned and practiced regarding organizing multiple service providers, multisource integration, and the development of a new operating model for the state CIO to employ in responding to the ever present forces of change. We introduced the notion of this new operating model in our publication State CIO as Broker: A New Model .  This new operating model is a prerequisite ...
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Cyberspace Solarium Commission  Both chambers of Congress have now passed the National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 5515) which establishes a Cyberspace Solarium Commission. The Commission is charged with developing a "strategic approach to protecting the crucial advantages of the United States in cyberspace against the attempts of adversaries." The thirteen-member commission would be staffed by private sector and legislative and executive branch members who have expertise and experience with cybersecurity. Read more  here .  FCC Extends Mobility Fund Phase II Challenge Process  At the behest of several senators, the Federal Communications ...
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For the past two years NASCIO has been heavily focusing on state IT procurement reform with the following: In February 2016, we issued a call to action for state IT procurement reform which was endorse by the National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO). In July 2016, NASPO invited NASCIO to a joint roundtable to discuss the recommendations and results of which were published In October 2017, NASCIO and NASPO established a joint task force on IT procurement negotiations and released a joint roadmap which included 18 recommendations for IT procurement reformation and transformation. So, what’s next? Earlier this spring NASCIO ...
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State legislators cyber task force meets in Colorado  The  National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Task Force on Cybersecurity   held a meeting in Denver, Colorado where NASCIO president Bo Reese spoke about Oklahoma's IT unification efforts. Other agenda items included: budgeting for cybersecurity, case study in Colorado's cybersecurity funding among others.  NASCIO part of elections cyber advisory group    The Council of State Governments (CSG) has partnered with the Democracy Fund to create an advisory group of state and local officials to address complex elections cybersecurity concerns. The group will host a consortium ...
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A record 613 NASCIO members and partners gathered in Baltimore last month for the Midyear Conference. Forty-eight states, two territories and the District of Columbia were represented, along with 119 private sector partners.    The conference featured networking activities, interactive sessions on pressing issues, showcases of innovative state projects and lots of coffee (350 gallons to be exact).  State projects highlighted in breakout sessions included Innovate Oklahoma, Michigan's CISO as a Service Program and North Carolina's Government Data Analytics Center. The discussion-based Learning Lounges explored the ...
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1. Homeland security advisors survey discusses threats and level of preparedness    The National Governors Association released its 2017 Homeland Security Advisor Survey which discusses homeland security priorities from the perspective of HSAs from 44 states. Cyber tops the list of concerns but few feel prepared to address this threat. Read the full report  here   .  2. GAO to begin studying federal cyber regulation harmonization   In May, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) will begin to study a long-time NASCIO priority, harmonization of disparate federal cyber regulations. The GAO request stems from an October, 2017  letter from ...
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When agencies transform their IT systems to address the digital imperative, one thing that doesn’t get the attention it deserves is disaster recovery (DR). Being more digital means being more dependent on technology. This increases the risk of disruption due to cyber-attacks, natural disasters or hardware/software failures. At $5600 per minute 1 to $8000 per minute 2 , the cost of disruption can be prohibitive for agencies. It has become more important than ever to keep business continuity plans updated and build a disaster recovery solution that can help recover in minutes. However, doing this through traditional DR models can be expensive. Compromising ...
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Driverless vehicles. With their alluring promise of leisurely commutes and road trips and the eradication of traffic accidents, it’s not hard to see the appeal. Claims of a world of passengers (not drivers) being whisked about safely and conveniently in just a few years may be overly optimistic, but that doesn’t mean that vehicle manufacturers aren’t working hard on research, testing and even production of these types of vehicles or that states aren't thinking about the challenges and benefits ahead.   The role that states will have in the future of driverless vehicles is not yet clear, however there will be disruptions, new regulations and standards ...
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As CIOs and State IT leaders, you are well aware that digital transformation in state government is inevitable. As your organization evolves and transforms, cloud should be one of the critical components you take with you on that journey. In fact, NASCIO recently released its annual survey of state information technology leaders on critical priorities for the coming year and cloud services is ranked as a close second just behind security (up one spot from last year). But before you define (or design) your cloud adoption strategy, take time to identify the ways in which cloud can play a role and how cloud capabilities align with your organization’s goals. ...
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How do you get the most out of networking opportunities at conferences? Like many of my public and private sector colleagues, I’ve been attending The National Association of State CIOs (NASCIO) Midyear and Annual Conferences for more than a decade. Along the way, as both a state government official representing Michigan and more recently as a part of the corporate membership, I’ve learned a few things to help achieve my goals. I’m sharing some tips to try and help the wider NASCIO community and hopefully create a WIN/WIN that can enable you to make the most of your precious time. I’m also hoping to open the door to a wider conversation that allows everyone ...
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1. DHS authorization passes Senate Committee  On March 7, the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act (H.R. 2825) passed the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee by 10-1; the measure has already passed the House. The bill would reauthorize DHS for the first time since its inception and "codify and authorize" roles and responsibilities for various components within DHS. 2. New name for NPPD  The National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) within DHS which includes the Office of Cybersecurity and Communications and the Office of Cyber and Infrastructure Analysis will go by a new name should H.R. 2825 be signed ...
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This year marks the 30 th anniversary of the NASCIO State IT Recognition Awards, which honor innovation and excellence in the use of information technology in state government. Since the program’s inception, states have submitted nearly 4,000 nominations highlighting their important work. In celebrations of this milestone, NASCIO challenges all states to submit at least one nomination for award consideration. Along with individual state recognition, the Awards highlight the integral, but often unsung, role information technology plays in meeting the goals of state government across our nation. To provide guidance on how to submit strong award nominations, ...
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As public sector cybersecurity specialists, we see firsthand that state leaders are considered to be guardians of public safety. They are expected to identify, protect, detect, respond, and help their agencies recover swiftly and effectively from any disruption to critical infrastructure to reduce damage and restore operations and services. In working with our clients, we know that most critical infrastructure protection programs only address physical threats, leaving many states vulnerable to cyber threats ranging from service disruption to public safety concerns. It is crucial that states expand their risk mindset to include cyber risks and lead a statewide, ...
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The pace of technology change is staggering. While agencies were still trying to figure out how to deal with Cloud and Analytics, along come AI and Blockchain to make lives more interesting! There is a lot of discussion around Blockchain - World Economic Forum estimates that by 2027, 10% of global gross domestic product will be stored on blockchain technology. And, lot of action as well - Gartner estimates that blockchain-based business will be worth $10 Billion by 2022. Almost every other industry is piloting blockchain initiatives - manufacturing and retail organizations are piloting blockchain for supply chain and inventory management, healthcare and ...
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1. National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) releases cyber budgeting guide . In late January 2018, NCSL released the " Budgeting for Cybersecurity " guide which aims to help legislators determine whether cyber-related budget requests are "justified and sufficient." The guide also speaks to cyber governance, strategy, training, hardware and software and much more. NASCIO contributed to the report. 2. President Trump releases budget and infrastructure plan . On February 12, President Trump released the President's Budget which proposes  cuts to domestic programs  like Medicare and increases funding for the military. The President's budget would  increase ...
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The CIO as Broker

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In recent years, NASCIO has identified trends and opportunities that have informed and guided CIOs around the nation. One of the most important references produced in this regard is the NASCIO Annual CIO Survey. In 2015, 2016 and 2017, the survey reports on Business Models, Sourcing and the CIO as Broker . The survey results presented in these references clearly demonstrate a portfolio of new approaches and the need for new skills and capabilities for managing a broad portfolio of services.  The 2015 NASCIO Annual CIO Survey presents that 85% of state CIOs see themselves as a “broker” of services, delivering solutions that must integrate multiple offerings, ...
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