Proposals for TIC compliance due April 15

The Office of Management and Budget has given federal agencies an April 15 deadline to submit their proposed plans for implementing OMB's Trusted Internet Connections initiative (TIC).

In a memo from Karen Evans, administrator for e-government and information technology, OMB instructed all federal departments and agencies to submit proposals for implementing TIC and their preferred means of receiving service from a Trusted Internet Connection Access Provider, which in many instances will be the department or agency itself.

The memo offers three options agencies can pursue: serve as a single service provider for the agency's own internal customers and having its own TIC; be a multiservice provider that offers services to more than one agency or bureau and shares a TIC with other agencies; or be an agency that intends to connect to a TIC by buying services from an approved provider.

OMB asked agencies to support their proposals with data about their technical and operational abilities to function in their preferred role and their requirements for Internet connectivity. For agencies that want to be their own TIC provider or provide TIC services to other agencies, OMB asked for extensive supporting data on the agencies' technical ability to monitor traffic and enforce security policies on network links.

The OMB launched TIC in November with a memo spelling out the initiative's primary objective, reducing the number of connections between the federal government's networks and the Internet from approximately 4,000 to a total of 50. The goal of TIC is limiting the exposure of the government's infrastructure to outside threats, streamlining the administration of network security policies and enabling more efficient monitoring of traffic entering and exiting the government's network by drastically reducing the number of points where government networks connect to the Internet.

OMB will use agencies' submissions in deciding how to allocate the targeted 50 TICs among agencies and finalizing its designs for the overall architecture of the government's Internet infrastructure once the TICs are in place.

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