Welcome to the Government Technology series, sponsored by Avnet Government Solutions and NetApp. This panel series discusses a wide range of technology topics and trends effecting federal agencies today. Visit our different discussions below and continue to check back as we add new discussions.
Tuesday - 08/05/2014, 11:32am EDT
Cloud computing offers organizations the opportunity to lower IT costs and increase agility. Adoption is increasing and many agencies are seeing the benefits, but for others, serious questions remain. How do they determine if they should make the move? Which cloud approach is best - public or private? Which applications and data should they move and what should remain in the data center? Is one type of cloud better for certain types of applications and data than another? How safe will the data be? How will it be managed?
Friday - 03/07/2014, 09:00am EST
As agencies move applications and services to the cloud over, two common themes emerged.
First is the initial step toward the cloud usually begins with virtualization across multiple platforms: applications, server, desktop and user.
Cloud then opened the door to enabling mission operations in a mobile environment. Federal employees could take advantage of smartphones and tablet computers to input or review data in real-time, and improve access to applications no matter where they are working.
The Postal Service's Inspector General's office, for example, virtualized more than 400 servers serving both its front end infrastructure and back-end storage and computing power.
By virtualizing, the USPS OIG now is moving toward a bring-your-own-device or BYOD strategy to let employees take advantage of the virtualized environment securely and efficiently.
Other agencies are following suit. The Navy hopes to virtualize all their servers and applications by 2017 as both a cost cutting strategy and to improve access through mobile devices.
There's no doubt federal CIOs have accepted the benefits of virtualization.
A recent survey by Forrester and NetApp of private sector IT executives found they say virtualization drives down hardware costs and improve disaster recovery capabilities.
Now add the quick evolution of mobile devices, whether smartphones or tablets, and the benefits of virtualization multiply.
At the same time, virtualization and mobile computing creates challenges—chief among them is security of data and the device.
Tuesday - 02/18/2014, 02:15pm EST
All agencies are fighting cyber-attacks. The FBI Director of Cyber Security believes there are two groups of organizations: those whose systems have been attacked and those who do not know they have been attacked. In the federal space, the velocity and variety of attacks has dramatically increased. With Advanced Persistent Threats (APT), the time it can take to comprise a system ranges from hours to days, yet the time it takes for its discovery averages 6 months. The cyber security solution has shifted from the perimeter (firewall) or how to stop the attacks to how to deal with the attacks after they occur. The emphasis is now on the controls and minimizing what the attacker is doing once he gets in. The cost of the attacks is down time and data loss. With a 200% to 300% increase in attacks on agency's systems, it is imperative the federal government implements a holistic solution including hardware, software, training and compliance.
Tuesday - 07/16/2013, 11:21am EDT