GSA to implement $2.5B email-as-a-service project

The GSA announcement comes as the federal government struggles to fulfill its own cloud strategy mandate in the face of security concerns
The GSA announcement comes as the federal government struggles to fulfill its own cloud strategy mandate in the face of security concerns

About 16 companies will compete for contracts for the project, allocated through federal, state and local government agencies via GSA's IT Schedule 70. The projects cover delivery of the secure cloud-based email service itself, plus office automation (virtual office), electronic records management, migration services and integration services through private, secret, government community and public cloud computing environments. Security, of course, will be paramount.

Lockheed Martin will support EaaS task orders with its proven “Solutions as a Service” (SolaS) secure cloud delivery innovation.

"As the largest provider of IT services to the federal government, Lockheed Martin is uniquely qualified to help agencies derive the maximum benefits of cloud computing," said Vicki Schmanske, vice president of Lockheed Martin's information systems and global solutions for the Civil IT & Security Solutions line of business.

The announcement comes as the federal government struggles to fulfill its own cloud strategy mandate in the face of security concerns. The White House officially launched the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP), to establish uniform federal security requirements for purchasing cloud services from vendors. The idea is to provide a risk-based approach for the adoption and use of third-party cloud services by making available to federal departments and agencies standardized security requirements for the authorization and cybersecurity of cloud services for selected information system impact levels. So far though, the government is finding it difficult to implement effectively.

“In the current economic and political environment, IT initiatives perceived to cut agency costs, like cloud migration and [bring-your-own-device], are moving forward rapidly and require increased focus from agency IT security personnel," said Keren Cummins, nCircle's director of federal markets. nCircle recently quizzed more than 100 respondents in the federal IT security community. "These same professionals report a disconnect between the pace at which these initiatives are evolving and agencies’ ability to effectively secure them. Given the rapid changes in agency IT environments driven by the push to cut costs, it’s easy to understand why compliance is an increasing concern.”

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