While larger Federal government agencies had the resources necessary to facilitate a shift to large-scale telework earlier this year, some smaller agencies had a more difficult time mounting similar efforts, a State Department official said at a Dec. 9 AFCEA Bethesda webinar.

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State Department

The three biggest linchpins for the Department of State’s successful implementation of telework across the enterprise each involve longer-term IT investments that the agency was able to make prior to the coronavirus pandemic, and each of those investments has paid big dividends in agency performance since March.

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State Department

As the U.S. faces increased foreign cyber threats, the Department of State said in 2019 that it would stand up a Bureau of Cyberspace Security and Emerging Technologies (CSET) to address these threats, but according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), State hasn’t informed or involved other partners in the bureau planning, which could increase risks of duplicating efforts.

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State Department

Despite the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of State has managed to meet or be on track for the majority of its Q3 FY2020 goals set in its Agency Priority Goal Action Plan for IT Modernization as part of the President’s Management Agenda (PMA).

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FCC

The Federal Communications Commission has scheduled a Forum on 5G Open Radio Access Networks (Open RAN) for September 14.

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State Department

Amb. Robert Strayer, the Department of State’s point person for cyber and international communications policy, is leaving government to join the Information Technology Industry (ITI) Council, a global technology trade association.

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State Department

While telecommunications providers in the United States prepare to rip out and replace gear from China-based Huawei and the United Kingdom has moved to eventually ban the company’s equipment from its 5G networks, the German government has officially stated its neutrality in the matter.

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FCC, Chinese suppliers
State Department

As part of the President’s Management Agenda (PMA), the State Department has undertaken efforts to modernize the Department’s IT portfolio. In its July update, the State Department announced that it has met all PMA milestones for Q1 and Q2 of this year, and is on track to meet its Q3 milestones.

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State Department
State Department

The Department of State has been monitoring local conditions in the D.C.-metro area during the Coronavirus pandemic, with the expectation of entering Phase I of Diplomacy Strong today.

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State Department

The Department of State is seeking information from industry vendors on how they would implement a 5G Clean Path plan, which would guide 5G network traffic in and out of U.S. diplomatic facilities at home and abroad while ensuring it does not traverse untrustworthy equipment from vendors such as Huawei Technologies or ZTE Corporation.

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State Department

The State Department workforce is at about 90 percent telework, with the remaining 10 percent performing duties not transferrable to telework such as driving, CIO Stuart McGuigan announced at the April 21 AFCEA breakfast.

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A senior official speaking Feb. 26 at the RSA Conference clarified recent steps by the State Department to publicly attribute and condemn acts of cyber aggression on the part of Russia, calling the actions of the Department part of a deliberate attempt to establish a framework for appropriate nation-state behavior in cyberspace.

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State Department
State Department

A new report from the State Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) says that the agency made some headway on addressing IT problems in Fiscal Year 2019, but not enough to quell the internal watchdog’s concerns that lingering issues are leaving the agency exposed to major cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

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DCOI data center server room infrastructure hyperconverged cloud storage architecture
cyber workforce
State Department
workforce federal workers industry-min

A Federal hiring freeze ordered in a January 2017 presidential memo resulted in “significant” staffing reductions across the State Department – including the inability to fill two Senior Executive Service cybersecurity positions, which then delayed implementing an enterprise risk management program for IT systems.

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