NSA revamps acquisition oversight

NSA revamps acquisition oversight

The National Security Agency has begun a project to streamline acquisition processes and dissolve the agency's Signals Intelligence Programs Office.

In an Aug. 8 memo to all NSA personnel, Air Force Lt. Gen. Michael V. Hayden broke down NSA's development efforts into five categories: systems acquisition; systems development; systems adaptation; systems quick-response capability; and joint leveraged partnerships with other Defense Department and intelligence agencies.

'All programs'regardless of category'will be managed by a program management team having expertise from the appropriate mission area, acquisition, financial management and systems engineering,' Hayden said in the internal memo obtained by GCN.

To that end, NSA is eliminating the Signals Intelligence Programs Office and parceling out its many projects to 'organizations best suited to foster development,' Hayden said.

Programs key to transformation at NSA fall within the systems acquisition category, Hayden said, and as such will be overseen directly by NSA's systems acquisition executive.

NSA will name program managers for each of the projects in this category, which range from cryptology management and space communications to electronic intelligence modernization and foreign instrumentation signals renovation.

Meanwhile, the agency is assigning the remainder of its developmental programs to the four other categories, Hayden said.

'These changes in our approach have struck a delicate balance between discipline and agility,' he said. 'With these moves, we are well positioned to accelerate the transformation of our agency as we continue to work toward a vision of making cryptology a team sport.'

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