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Kundra: Expect Formal Federal Cloud Security Standards in 6 Months

Vivek Kundra; Photo: omb.gov, fsteurope.com

As the federal government prepares to take to the cloud, adopting cloud-computing platforms across agencies, federal Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra says security standards will be in place early next year.

At a conference yesterday on the future of federal IT sponsored by Government Executive, Kundra spoke about the government’s  imminent shift to cloud computing, which replaces often-costly and unwieldy physical hardware and software with online-hosted equipment.

Last month, the General Services Administration released a proposal for cloud-computing security known as the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, or FedRAMP to allay concerns of some security experts that GSA risks becoming an Icarus as it takes to the clouds.

And, Kundra told his audience of federal IT managers Thursday to expect a final version of FedRAMP in six months time, according to a report on Nextgov.

He said the deadline was extended so further talks with industry leaders could be included.

“The reason is that this is so important. . . . It’s our opportunity to get this right once and for all when it comes to cybersecurity,” Kundra added.

Kundra’s remarks came on a big day for cloud computing, as GSA became the first federal agency to float its email servers to a cloud-computing platform under a $6.7 million deal with Google and Unisys.

Cloud computing has long been recognized within forward-thinking federal IT circles as the wave of the future.

In a Nov. 19 speech, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget Jeffrey Zients announced a host of federal IT reforms, including a push for agencies to think “cloud-first” when adopting new tech platforms.

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