The Defense Department has awarded a first of its kind joint enterprise licensing agreement for Microsoft collaboration, mobility, productivity and security tools. Valued at $617 million, the three-year agreement will allow the Army, Air Force and the Defense Information Systems Agency to begin using the latest versions of the company’s products.

The agreement creates a single framework providing all three organizations with a single, standardized way to access new Microsoft technologies. The contract also supports top DOD IT goals for data center consolidation, collaboration, cybersecurity, mobility, cloud computing and big data, company officials said in a statement. Keep reading →

For Teri Takai, the key to overseeing cybersecurity for the world’s largest defense organization is striking a delicate balance between enabling mobility and safe-guarding information that is often crucial to national security. In her role as the Department of Defense’s chief information officer, she must also convince a widely diverse group of constituents that a shared approach is best.

Every computer attack is a battle between the owners of a computational infrastructure and adversaries bent on using these resources for their own purposes. The owners may span multiple organizations that have limited trust between them. Meanwhile, human adversaries are adaptively hostile, employing open-ended strategies and anti-forensic techniques. The problem of securing complex infrastructures in a dynamic hostile environment with changing adversaries cannot be solved with static defenses or uncoordinated unilateral measures. In today’s large infrastructures comprised of many collaborating organizations, the way we typically monitor cyber defense is to gather all the cyber data from across the enterprise to a single point and analyze it centrally. While this gives excellent scope of information, this approach scales poorly. Read more here