Risk
4/28/2011
05:41 PM
50%
50%

DHS Creates Public-Private Technology Exchange

The Department of Homeland Security gives companies the requirements of a technology, product, or service it's seeking and companies spend their own money to build prototypes.

Obama's Tech Tools
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Obama's Tech Tools
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has developed a technology exchange program with private companies to help the government more quickly find solutions to IT problems.

Through the department's Science and Technology Directorate's (S&T) System Efficacy through Commercialization, Utilization, Relevance and Evaluation (SECURE) program, the DHS gives companies the requirements of a technology, product, or service it's seeking, according to a DHS blog post. It also provides them a rough idea of what other customers might exist for the technology.

In return, the companies use their own expense to engage in R&D to meet the requirements of developing the technology.

"This saves money on both ends: The government doesn't spend money on research and development, while the company doesn't waste resources trying to figure out on their own what the government ultimately is going to need," according to the post.

The DHS has certified the first product through the program--a video system for mass-transit vehicles that's blast resistant. A company called Visual Defence designed the product, which is meant to act like the flight-recorder "black box" in planes, according to the DHS.

A product can be SECURE-certified only after it's gone through a series of tests by an independent third party. Visual Defence took several months to build a prototype of the system, which was tested against improvised explosive devices and a diesel fuel fire. The company also tested it in a few municipal transit systems in the U.S.

DHS also is looking for systems that involve aviation security and cross-border travel and trade, according to the post.

DHS Chief Commercialization Officer Tom Cellucci--who steers DHS S&T outreach with both the private and public sectors--created the SECURE program, according to the post.

The DHS is one of the federal agencies that works quite closely with the private sector. It currently is part of a larger federal IT professional exchange program with companies, and recently was seeking a cybersecurity expert to spend six months at the department sharing knowledge.

Indeed, cybsecurity is integral for much of the DHS collaboration with the private sector. It exchanges cybersecurity intelligence data with business CIOs through a series of fusion centers around the country, among other information-sharing endeavors.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading Tech Digest, Dec. 19, 2014
Software-defined networking can be a net plus for security. The key: Work with the network team to implement gradually, test as you go, and take the opportunity to overhaul your security strategy.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2013-4440
Published: 2014-12-19
Password Generator (aka Pwgen) before 2.07 generates weak non-tty passwords, which makes it easier for context-dependent attackers to guess the password via a brute-force attack.

CVE-2013-4442
Published: 2014-12-19
Password Generator (aka Pwgen) before 2.07 uses weak pseudo generated numbers when /dev/urandom is unavailable, which makes it easier for context-dependent attackers to guess the numbers.

CVE-2014-2026
Published: 2014-12-19
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in the search functionality in United Planet Intrexx Professional before 5.2 Online Update 0905 and 6.x before 6.0 Online Update 10 allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the request parameter.

CVE-2014-2716
Published: 2014-12-19
Ekahau B4 staff badge tag 5.7 with firmware 1.4.52, Real-Time Location System (RTLS) Controller 6.0.5-FINAL, and Activator 3 reuses the RC4 cipher stream, which makes it easier for remote attackers to obtain plaintext messages via an XOR operation on two ciphertexts.

CVE-2014-5212
Published: 2014-12-19
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in nds/search/data in iMonitor in Novell eDirectory before 8.8 SP8 Patch 4 allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the rdn parameter.

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Join us Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. Eastern Time to hear what employers are really looking for in a chief information security officer -- it may not be what you think.