FED GOVT CYBER THREAT: Concerned by Cyber Threat, Obama Seeks Big Increase in Funding. President Barack Obama recently sought a surge in funding to counter cyber security threats, as his top intelligence official warned Congress that computer attacks were among the most imminent security challenges facing the United States. In his fiscal 2017 budget proposal, Obama asked for $19 billion for cyber security across the U.S. government, an increase of $5 billion over this year. Read more

MICROSOFT: Released 13 Security Bulletins for February Patch Tuesday, 6 Rated Critical. On February 2016 Patch Tuesday, Microsoft released 13 security bulletins, six of which are rated as critical for remote code execution. The rest deal with fixing elevation of privilege, denial of service, and security feature bypass vulnerabilities. Read more

HACKERS: Get Employee Records at Justice and Homeland Security Depts. In the latest cyberattack targeting the federal government, an intruder gained access to information for thousands of employees at the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security, but officials said Monday that there was no indication that sensitive information had been stolen. Read more

CONTRACTING DOCS: OPM Seeks to Tighten IT Security of Background Investigation Companies. Contractors that conduct background investigations for the federal government will have to report information security incidents to the Office of Personnel Management within half an hour, are required to use smartcards as a second layer of security when logging on to agency networks and must agree to let OPM inspect their systems at any time. Read more


HADOOP: Why Most Business Intelligence Tools Fail the ‘Hadoop Test’. There are now well-known statistical techniques for dimensional reduction (e.g., principal component analysis – PCA) but there is a huge potential for even simpler techniques like automatically pointing out dimensions that correlate well with your KPIs. Read the rest

GOVT DATA: Is the Government Hoarding Too Much Data? Keeping everything forever is a recipe for inefficiency and waste. Government databases are filled with everything from traffic data to pet-ownership statistics, and many agencies lack the necessary staff and infrastructure to maintain and analyze all of this information. Public-sector data analysts report that they spend 47 percent of their time collecting and organizing data but less than a third of their time actually gleaning actionable insights from it. Read more

COLORADO: Legislators Move to Formalize Open-Data Program in Secretary of State’s Office. Colorado lawmakers are taking steps to formalize a 2-1/2-year-old pilot program that encourages state government agencies to “streamline access to public data” by making datasets available online in machine-readable formats. Read more

DATA ANOMALIES: 4 Strategies for Finding and Interpreting Data Anomalies. When people think of a data anomaly, they often think of an error – a random blip outside of the normal scope of things that can be considered but discarded. A data anomaly, to many, is little more than a data defect. In the world of business data intelligence, however, this view is not only usually wrong, but in many cases, it can also be damaging. A data anomaly is often much more than a blip – it’s a signal. Read more


NOW ON SLIDESHARE: Tech Update Summary from Blue Mountain Data Systems January 2016

IT SECURITY SUPPORT: Blue Mountain Data Systems is actively involved in implementing FISMA and NIST standards with Federal Civilian Agencies. Due to our extensive experience in this area, Blue Mountain has developed processes and organizational techniques to help ensure security deliverables are completed on time, and performed in the most efficient manner possible. We ensure that NIST-800-53 control requirements are treated consistently during definition, analysis, implementation, auditing, and reporting phases of a system. Find out more about Blue Mountain Data Systems IT Security Support Services. Call us at 703-502-3416.

BLUE MOUNTAIN DATA SYSTEMS HAS THE EXPERIENCE: 1994 to Present – U.S. Dept. of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration. Responsible to the Office of Technology and Information Systems for information systems architecture, planning, applications development, networking, administration and IT security, supporting the enforcement of Title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act — ERISA. Within the EBSA, Blue Mountain is responsible for design, development and support for its various enforcement database management systems, as well as all case tracking and customer service inquiry systems. Blue Mountain also provides IT security services to the EBSA, in the form of FISMA Assessment and Authorization, System Security Plans, Risk and vulnerability assessments, monitoring and investigation support. Read more.


FYI: Federal & State CTOs CIOs CISOs: Daily Tech Update – February 17, 2016

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