OMB says fed security systems improving

Wednesday, 28 May 2003, 5:55 PM EST

Federal agencies are making "significant strides" in dealing with longstanding IT security issues but much work remains, according to the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) FY 2002 Report to Congress on Federal Government Information Security Reform.

Although the report says the Bush administration has "applied more rigorous IT security reviews, more threats and vulnerabilities have also materialized."

The OMB is required by law to conduct annual federal IT security reviews under the Government Information Security Reform Act (GISRA). The law also mandates Inspector Generals to perform annual independent security reviews of agency programs and systems and report the results to the OMB.

In the 2001 report to Congress, OMB identified six common government-wide security weaknesses: lack of senior management attention to IT security; non-existent IT security performance measures; poor security education and awareness; failure to fully fund and integrate security measures into the budget process; failure to ensure that contractor services are adequately secure; and lack of detecting, reporting and sharing of information vulnerabilities.

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