In March, the Biden Administration released the latest guidance aimed at improving the cybersecurity practices of Federal agencies. The National Cybersecurity Strategy builds on the Executive Order for Improving the Nation's Cybersecurity that makes cybersecurity a strategic focus of every agency. This latest guidance drills further into the actions needed to ensure that government systems and citizen data are protected against the ever-evolving threat landscape.
The goal of the strategy is to "rebalance the responsibility to defend cyberspace" and "realign incentives to favor long-term investments." To do this, the responsibility for cybersecurity must be shifted to the organizations that are most capable and best-positioned to reduce risks. It points out that, "a single person's momentary lapse in judgment, use of an outdated password, or errant click on a suspicious link should not have national security consequences." While security is the responsibility of everyone, small businesses, small localities, and individuals simply do not have the resources to support the security needed to protect systems and data. Instead, the guidance proposes new incentives to favor long-term investments in security, resilience, and new technologies.Continue reading →
State and local governments tend to be the early adopters of emerging technology in the public sector. Smart city projects, grant management, and regional collaboration have driven localities to implement emerging technology to meet the real challenges of serving citizens. Today, states and localities are experimenting with how virtual reality, and more specifically the metaverse, can help further real-world connections in communities.
Trained by Avatars
Virtual reality has long been used as a tool for training in government - think flight simulators - but today, the technology is being used for more than just tactical training. Virtual reality is helping to introduce scenarios to improve the empathy and understanding of public servants. In the metaverse, public safety professionals can safely simulate responding to dangerous situations (without the real-world risks) while also adding in realistic interactions with "people" behaving as they would during a crisis.Continue reading →
Biometrics are more than facial recognition. Biometrics include all types of biological markers that can be used for identification. Fingerprints pre-date the use of facial recognition and today the practice continues to evolve to use other biological data for a wide variety of use cases.
Tapping into wearable data for first responder safety
The Department of Homeland Security recently funded several startups that have developed innovative monitoring technologies that can be used to protect the health, safety and mental well being of police officers, firefighters, and other emergency responders. These solutions include:Continue reading →
The mission of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may seem straightforward - protect the homeland - but in practice a lot goes into fulfilling that promise. DHS is an incredibly complex organization with a set of agencies that, while focused on the singular mission of keeping America safe, do so in incredibly diverse ways. The Department has laid out six core missions that all support the effort to secure the nation.
Strengthen Preparedness and Resilience - from natural disasters to man-made incidents, DHS is responsible for making sure the building blocks are in place to mitigate the risks, limit the impact, and drive recovery
Machine Learning (ML) and other aspects of Artificial Intelligence (AI) are becoming a critical part of government modernization plans. The fear that "machines will replace people" has largely disappeared. In fact, people see the benefit that ML provides for human workers. ML technology allows machines to do what they are best at - fast computation of large data sets - freeing up humans to do what they do best - analyzing and making sense of the data produced.
The new reality is that while machines will not replace people, those that refuse to adopt and adapt to AI-enabled tools may in fact find themselves replaced by other people that do. The proof is in the pudding. ML tools are helping government teams meet critical challenges of unemployment fraud, natural disasters, racial equity, and healthcare.Continue reading →