Major programs within VA

Departmentwide WAN modernization. This project is in its fourth and final phase of implementation. It will provide a standardized, centrally managed, easily expandable and secure data telecommunications network for all VA facilities.

Server consolidation. The VA Exchange Consolidation Workgroup is completing a plan to consolidate more than 450 Microsoft Exchange servers at 270 sites. The purpose is to decrease costs, improve performance and availability, and provide more efficient service.

Desktop security. VA is locking down its more than 250,000 desktop PCs and installing a configuration management system to secure the environment and make it possible to push patches and upgrades to users without implementation on each machine.

Authentication and Authorization Infrastructure Project. AAIP is providing employees with smart identification cards that store digital credentials used to log onto VA computers through a public-key infrastructure. The system will let users digitally sign transactions and protect sensitive information across the department's enterprise network. VA also will use the smart cards to govern access to controlled areas in buildings. The department expects to issue PKI certificates to all employees in the next 18 months and eventually furnish 500,000 smart cards to employees, contractors and volunteers.

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