Aug 15 2019

New CIO Council Group to Support Government's Mobile Efforts

A new mobility working group has been formed to address common challenges across agencies.

A recently formed interagency working group aims to reorganize and simplify the government’s efforts to address shared mobility challenges.

Last month, the Federal CIO Council unveiled the Federal Mobility Group, a federal community of practice that merges the existing Mobile Services Category Team and the Mobile Technology Tiger Team.

The MSCT was established in 2016 by the Office of Management and Budget’s Category Management Leadership Council to enhance federal acquisition and management of mobile devices and services. Meanwhile, the MTTT, created by the CIO Council in 2013 to address mobile security requirements of the Digital Government Strategy, is responsible for “monitoring mobile security technologies and initiatives to ensure the evolution of federal mobile security after the strategy is implemented,” according to a CIO Council blog post

The FMG cements the partnership that has been going on between the two groups of mobility experts, according to the CIO Council blog post. The combined group will be better able to “respond to the evolving definition and emerging technologies” in the mobile computing and communication landscapes

MORE FROM FEDTECH: Find out how NSF, NASA and other agencies keep tech working for far-flung employees.

New Group Tackles Mobile Tech and Policy Challenges

“The FMG provides a singular conduit for the federal mobile community, whose purpose is to share information and identify cross-agency needs for mobile policy, guidance and best practices, acquisition of mobile devices and services, and operational requirements for federal mobility programs,” the post says. 

Mobile leaders from the Department of Homeland Security, the General Services Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology chair the FMG, and it and includes three at-large agency representatives. NASA CIO Renee Wynn has been spearheading the FMG. 

The FMG will be on several tasks, according to OMB, including streamlining the government’s inventory data call spend surveys, accelerating the inclusion of mobile into the DHS’ Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation program, and providing an implementer’s perspective for development and updating of NIST standards and guidance for secure mobility.

Wynn said last week at an Advanced Technology Academic Research Center event that agencies should work with OMB to create mobile-friendly policies, FedScoop reports

“OMB is already beginning to think about what policies need to change in order to enable this because otherwise CIOs like myself are going to have to make risk-based decisions that are outside some of the policy frameworks because they don’t match up,” Wynn said. 

As the space agency plans to resume manned spaceflight missions to the moon and perhaps to Mars, NASA has established four mobile priorities: mobile security, acquisition, 5G wireless network infrastructure and mission enablement, according to FedScoop. 

“Security has to be from the beginning; we didn’t do it when we invented the internet … and we’re all paying that price,” Wynn said. “I’ve paid it many times. I think I can show up to China, and I’ll be greeted there as happily as I’ll be greeted here.”


Zero Trust–Ready?

Answer 3 questions on how your organization is implementing zero trust.