DHS cybersecurity leader Andy Ozment is leaving federal service on Jan. 7. Andy Ozment, the Department of Homeland Security’s assistant secretary for cybersecurity and communications, has resigned from the position. Ozment’s last day at the department will be Jan. 7, DHS officials confirmed to FCW. Danny Toler, deputy assistant secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications, will assume Ozment’s responsibilities. Ozment, who is among the top leaders at the National Protection and Programs Directorate, has been a relatively high-profile face for DHS cybersecurity efforts, testifying before Congress and speaking in other about a host of cybersecurity and infrastructures issues, as well as leading the investigation into the Office of Personnel Management breach that exposed more than 20 million federal personal records. DHS cyber exec resigns
Month: December 2016
NIST Seeking Vendors for Authentication Project
December 19, 2016–The National Institute of Standards and Technology and its National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) said today they released a “Federal Register” notice for their Multifactor Authentication for e-Commerce project, and are inviting technology vendors to participate in the project build. “This project aims to help retailers implement stronger authentication mechanisms to ensure the user is authorized to use the card for e-commerce, card-not-present transactions, using standards-based commercially available and/or open source products,” NIST said.
North Carolina Highway Patrol Seeks Waiver
December 16, 2016–The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau today sought comment on an application and waiver sought by the North Carolina State Highway Patrol to allow it to license a business/industrial/land transportation pool channel. Comments are due Jan. 17, 2017, and replies Feb. 1, 2017, in FCC file number 0006965513.
States Express Concern with Extended FirstNet Award Delay
December 16, 2016–Some state representatives say they are concerned about the impact of an extended delay before the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) awards a contract to a partner to build and maintain a nationwide public safety broadband network. FirstNet is in a bit of a holding pattern regarding the awarding of the contract. It had hoped to announce that award by Nov. 1, but the award has been delayed in the wake of a lawsuit filed by Rivada Mercury LLC, a consortium that contends it was illegally disqualified from the procurement’s “competitive range” (TRDaily, Dec. 2). If the lawsuit is not successful, AT&T, Inc., may be left as the only qualified bidder. Continue reading
Strickling Calls for Receiver Standards, Details of Spectrum Use
December 16, 2016–As he prepares to leave the agency next month, NTIA head Lawrence E. Strickling today called for the development of receiver standards to protect against interference to authorized spectrum operations, and he also said there is a need to better quantify use of spectrum by federal and commercial entities. During a speech at a 5G event organized by the Hudson Institute, Mr. Strickling said great progress has been made in the last eight years, through collaboration between federal agencies and between the government and industry, in freeing up spectrum for commercial services, while meeting the growing needs for frequencies of the Department of Defense and other agencies. Continue reading
Bureau Launches NOI on 5G Cybersecurity
December 16, 2016–The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau is seeking input on cybersecurity issues related to 5G wireless services and Internet of things services. The notice of inquiry adopted today in Public Safety docket 16-353 “looks holistically at the security implications (e.g., as to IoT) that arise through the provision of a wide variety of services to various market sectors and users in the future 5G network environment,” and will explore “5G security threats, solutions, and best practices,” the bureau said.
“As an initial matter, we seek to understand the current state of security planning for 5G networks,” the bureau said. “We must first build a solid foundation of facts about 5G security in order to further identify potential issue areas and solutions.” Continue reading
FirstNet Announced 2017 Meeting Dates
December 16, 2016–The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) has announced proposed 2017 dates for meetings of the board’s four committees and the full board. They are March 14-15, 2017, in Reston, Va., and June 28-29, Sept. 13-14, and Dec. 6-7 for locations to be determined.
Andy Seybold’s Public Safety Advocate, December 21, 2016
’Twas the night before Christmas and through most of the land Band 14 was quiet as a mouse. No band 14 was playing in most of the states.
The towers were bare and the devices not shared, But there were hopes that band 14 soon would be there.
Public Safety was there, waiting to serve While visions of FirstNet danced in their heads, And TJ and Mike wearing Santa caps Had just settled down for a long winter’s nap.
When out of the states there arose such a clatter They sprang to the Internet to see what was the matter Away to the keyboards they flew like a flash Tore open twitter, and there read the next post.
The screen was alive with a new set of tweets That gave light to the terrible plight. When what to their wondering eyes should appear, But a tweet from Bill Schrier and others as well.
The tweet filled the screen They knew in a moment that all would end well. More rapid than eagles more tweets they did come, As Bill called out and shouted all their names Now! On Harlin, On Sue, On JJ and Jeff, Now work away, work away all!
So up to the challenge they arose with a yell With plans for the network they were ready to go. Then in a twinkling they knew it was true, The network would be delayed of that there was proof.
As they shook their heads another tweet did arrive, Down the screen it came for all to behold It was addressed to each of them and all, As they read it they laughed with glee Knowing the work they had done Would soon be rewarded with towers and sites.
Santa had tweeted for all of them to see That the delays would be over in the blink of an eye. Public Safety would get what it knew it needed And FirstNet would come to fruition. As the tweets, they did come, the last one of note Was from Santa, of course, and across the screen it did float Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!
From all of us to all of you, Happy Holidays! Andy Continue reading
FCC Releases Order that Would Free Up Spectrum
December 16, 2016–The FCC released an order on reconsideration and a memorandum opinion and order today that would free up spectrum from Maritime Communications/Land Mobile LLC (MCLM) for use by requesting railroad and critical infrastructure industry (CII) companies.
The item had been on the agenda for today’s FCC meeting, but it was deleted yesterday after it was adopted (TRDaily, Dec. 14). The item in WT docket 13-85 responds to petitions for reconsideration of a September 2014 MO&O that addressed requests to approve the assignment of AMTS (automated maritime telecommunications system) licenses caught up in a hearing before an administrative law judge concerning the character qualifications of MCLM (TRDaily, Sept. 11, 2014). The earlier order in WT docket 13-85 removed from the hearing an application to assign a license from MCLM to the Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA) for positive train control (PTC). But it declined requests to provide the same relief and free up spectrum sought by CII entities, angering that industry. Continue reading
FirstNet Weekly Update to the Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) –December 12, 2016
FirstNet CEO Mike Poth gave an update to the California Broadband Council in Sacramento last Thursday. Mike explained how FirstNet will benefit both the state and public safety nationwide and addressed questions on topics including opt-out costs and the use of deployables in the event of wildfires in mountainous or rural areas.
Also last week, FirstNet staff and the Oklahoma Public Safety Broadband Network team (OKPSBN) exhibited at the 2016 All Hazards Incident Management Teams Association Educational Symposium in Oklahoma City. FirstNet and OKPSBN provided a briefing on the importance of public safety broadband and how it will transform incident management in the future, and demonstrated related data applications. The FirstNet team had multiple opportunities to answer questions related to the State Plan process and the future benefits of the network in large-scale incident response. Continue reading