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DoD, DHS to share biometrics

The Department of Homeland Security already has real-time access to biometric data maintained in the FBI's huge database of criminal records. Soon, agency officials say they'll be able to share similar data with the Defense Department. Biometric information - mainly fingerprints - can be shared between DHS databases and the criminal records the FBI holds at its Criminal Justice Information Services Division in West Virginia. DoD's database will be in the loop within the next year - among other things - letting customs and immigration officials instantly know if someone trying to enter the country has been on the battlefield against the US military. The technology could potentially come into play even if the Defense Department hasn't positively identified that person. That's because the database also includes latent fingerprints taken from improvised explosive devices in Iraq and Afganistan. DoD and DHS say it'll be a big improvement over the limited information sharing they conduct now, using slow, manual processes.

Tags: technology , Meeting Mission and Goals through Technology ,

Monday - 03/21/2011, 06:54pm EDT

HHS opens data to app developers

The Health and Human Services department wants researchers and IT developers to use its vast storehouse of data to make new apps. And it's trying to make it easier for that to happen. The department has created what it calls a Health Indicators Warehouse - a collection of databases on health indicators, along with application programming interfaces built on Web 2.0 technologies. HHS hopes programmers will come up with innovative ways to use the information it's built up in its databases and make it more relevant and more widely available. The agency says the data sets available through the new APIs include 1200 different health indicators from 170 data sources. To get the ball rolling, HHS started developing some of its own apps using the data last year, as part of the Community Health Data Initiative. The apps, and the APIs, are available at health

Tags: technology , Meeting Mission and Goals through Technology ,

Monday - 03/21/2011, 06:53pm EDT

Federal CIO pitches single device for home, work use

Federal IT policymakers say the days of agency employees having one cell phone for work and other for personal use could soon be a thing of the past. The same could be true of laptops. They're exploring the idea of letting federal workers use their personal devices to do their jobs, rather than segregating their work lives onto separate devices. The idea, according to Federal CIO Vivek Kundra is that many employees are already using newer, better technology in their personal lives than the equipment their agency issues them. Under the idea, workers would get a stipend to help pay for technology that they buy on their own, rather than agency-issued devices, and Kundra says federal CIOs can overcome the security challenges. He says as I-T needs continue to become a bigger and bigger part of agencies' missions, keeping up with the latest technology will rack up unsustainable costs.

Tags: technology , Meeting Mission and Goals through Technology ,

Monday - 03/21/2011, 06:47pm EDT

For Army, network tops modernization priorities

Susan Lawrence, the Army's newly-appointed Chief Information Officer members of the IT and communications industry that the service is focused on creating an end-to-end IT infrastructure, eliminating structures that required soldiers to train and live on one network, and deploy on another.

Tags: DoD , industry , Susan Lawrence , Mike Krieger , Army , cloud computing , enterprise email , AFCEA , data center consolidation , DoD Report

Monday - 03/21/2011, 07:06am EDT

Assad: KC-X to lead the way in procurements

Shay Assad, director of the office of Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy, told industry professionals Thursday that DoD would provide them with a clearer picture of what the Pentagon wants when it issues solicitations to industry. Past acquisition processes, he said, had forced vendors to guess what factors DoD thought were truly important.

Tags: DoD , contracting , industry , management , GAO , insourcing , Coalition for Government Procurement , Shay Assad , source selection , acquisition workforce , bid protest ,

Friday - 03/18/2011, 07:48am EDT

DoD to adopt new source selection procedures

The Defense Department is looking to standardize the procedures its components use in source selection under competitive acquisitions. New DoDwide procedures issued this month will take effect in July.

Tags: DoD , contracting , industry , Federal Acquisition Regulation , Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy , Shay Assad , Professional Services Council , Stan Soloway ,

Wednesday - 03/16/2011, 08:19pm EDT

Dueling testimony on TRICARE fees

Members of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel are studying the Defense Department's proposal to increase fees for working-age retirees who use the military's TRICARE health insurance benefit. The panel heard, in separate hearings, from DoD officials defending the increase, and retiree groups who fear it is a "camel's nose under the tent."

Tags: DoD , pay and benefits , Congress , TRICARE , health care , Robert Gates , Stan Strobridge , Rick Jones , Niki Tsongas , Joe Wilson , National Association of Uniformed Services , Military Officers Association of America ,

Wednesday - 03/16/2011, 03:50pm EDT

AFGE pulls out of NSPS talks

The American Federation of Government Employees said Tuesday it will no longer participate in discussions related to the future status of DoD employees who had been part of the soon-to-be-terminated National Security Personnel System. The labor organization said "union-busting" activities by the Air Force were the reason for its decision.

Tags: pay and benefits , DoD , Congress , NSPS , AFGE , John Gage , Air Force , pay-for-performance ,

Wednesday - 03/16/2011, 07:40am EDT

Defense acquisitions may have to settle

A Congressional panel heard from deputy Pentagon service chiefs last week that when it comes to future acquisitions, DOD may have to settle for "good enough".

Tags: Federal Drive , DoD Report , acquisition , defense ,

Tuesday - 03/15/2011, 08:40am EDT

DoD details furlough rules...just in case

Military personnel would not be subject to a furlough in the event of a government shutdown, according to guidance prepared by the Defense Department as a contingency plan. The memo, drafted earlier this month, gives broad overarching guidance to military departments and agencies who would have discretion to determine what activities would and would not be exempted from a shutdown.

Tags: DoD , contracting , shutdown , budget , DoD budget , continuing resolution , Robert Gates ,

Tuesday - 03/15/2011, 07:27am EDT
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