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Defense Department Adopts NIST Security Standards

DOD replaces longstanding information assurance process with NIST's holistic "built-in, not bolt-on," risk-focused security approach

In a significant change in security policy, the Department of Defense (DOD) has dropped its longstanding DOD Information Assurance Certification and Accreditation Process (DIACAP) and adopted a risk-focused security approach developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

The decision, issued Wednesday by Defense Department CIO Teri Takai in a DOD Instruction memo (8510.01), aligns for the first time the standards the Defense Department and civilian agencies use to ensure their IT systems comply with approved information assurance and risk management controls.

The new policy shifts the DOD from a legacy of DIACAP compliance, which prescribes a standard set of activities and a management process to certify and accredit DOD information systems before implementation and every three years thereafter. The Defense Department will now embrace a combination of more heavily risk-management-focused approaches developed over many years by NIST, including standards for assessment and authorization, risk assessment, risk management, and dynamic continuous monitoring practices.

Read the full article here.

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Leonard T. Marzigliano works as a certified Information Assurance Architect on contract at the Defense Logistics Agency in Ft. Belvoir, Va.  With more than 23 years of experience as an IT contractor and consultant, he has worked with hundreds of ... View Full Bio

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