Dan Lohrmann

Chief Security Officer & Chief Strategist at Security Mentor Inc.


Daniel J. Lohrmann is an internationally recognized cybersecurity leader, technologist, keynote speaker and author.

During his distinguished career, he has served global organizations in the public and private sectors in a variety of executive leadership capacities, receiving numerous national awards including: CSO of the Year, Public Official of the Year and Computerworld Premier 100 IT Leader.
Lohrmann led Michigan government’s cybersecurity and technology infrastructure teams from May 2002 to August 2014, including enterprisewide Chief Security Officer (CSO), Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) roles in Michigan.

He currently serves as the Chief Security Officer (CSO) and Chief Strategist for Security Mentor Inc. He is leading the development and implementation of Security Mentor’s industry-leading cyber training, consulting and workshops for end users, managers and executives in the public and private sectors. He has advised senior leaders at the White House, National Governors Association (NGA), National Association of State CIOs (NASCIO), U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), federal, state and local government agencies, Fortune 500 companies, small businesses and nonprofit institutions.

He has more than 30 years of experience in the computer industry, beginning his career with the National Security Agency. He worked for three years in England as a senior network engineer for Lockheed Martin (formerly Loral Aerospace) and for four years as a technical director for ManTech International in a US/UK military facility.

Lohrmann is the author of two books: Virtual Integrity: Faithfully Navigating the Brave New Web and BYOD for You: The Guide to Bring Your Own Device to Work. He has been a keynote speaker at global security and technology conferences from South Africa to Dubai and from Washington, D.C., to Moscow.

He holds a master's degree in computer science (CS) from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and a bachelor's degree in CS from Valparaiso University in Indiana.

Follow Lohrmann on Twitter at: @govcso
 

September 3, 2016

How to Respond to Social Engineering Incidents: An Expert Interview

Steven Fox is a top government cybersecurity expert, Distinguished Fellow with the Ponemon Institute and frequent speaker at top security events all over America. In this exclusive interview, Steven shares several low-tech but sophisticated social engineering techniques that hackers use to gain (unauthorized) privileged access into government systems and large and small company networks. Most important, what can we do to prevent fraud and respond to incidents that do occur?

August 28, 2016

Making the Top Smart City in Europe

How do you build a 'smart city?' What innovative factors lead to award-winning smarter technology examples to emulate? Which European city is the smartest? Let’s explore.

August 20, 2016

Your Security Team is Outgunned: Where's the Help?

Most experts believe the good guys continue to fall further behind in our global hacker wars. So how did we get to this point in cyberspace? Most important, where can you go for help in this new Wild West online?

August 14, 2016

Digital Detox: Why (and How) Many Now Unplug to Recharge

Do you unplug when you go on vacation? How about placing boundaries or time limits on your children’s screen time? What can be done to help? Is it time to schedule a digital detox?

August 6, 2016

Millennials in Government — or Not?

What's happening with millennials in government? Are new strategies needed to attract and retain young people into public-sector jobs? Let's explore.

July 31, 2016

Understanding New Hacktivism: Where Next for Hackers With a Cause?

In 2016, hacktivism has become a mainstream force impacting millions of global lives. ‘Hacking for a cause’ has now become a weapon that transcends far beyond ‘antisocial geek misfit’ boundaries. From the DNC email hack to the Panama Papers, a surge in new hacktivism is now the top anti-establishment online tool for achieving a diverse set of causes around the globe.

July 24, 2016

Could the Rio Olympics Bring Enterprise Network Problems?

As the world looks forward to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil, a long list of problems and solutions have received media attention. But regardless of what happens in the arenas, is your organization prepared? Here’s a primer on potential online trouble spots and how you can prepare.

July 17, 2016

Auto Industry Bug Bounty Programs Point to Our Security Future

Top auto industry companies have announced coordinated vulnerability disclosure programs. This use of ‘bug bounties’ to encourage global hackers to help identify security holes points to the future of critical infrastructure protection. Here’s what’s happening now with crowdsourcing vulnerability management, and why the entire cybersecurity industry is taking notice.

July 10, 2016

Data Backups: What Are You Really Doing?

Over the past few months, several random events got me thinking a lot more about data backups — again. I know, I know — a boring topic that you already dealt with years ago. You are tempted to just move on. But for your own good, please read this.

July 2, 2016

Smart Cities: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

More and more devices are plugging into your government’s corner of the Internet of Things (IoT), but are we truly implementing the right projects in 'smart' ways? Here’s what you need to know about the state of smart cities opportunities along with some potholes to avoid and questions to be answered.

June 26, 2016

Brexit Effects on Technology, Security and More

The people of the United Kingdom (UK) have voted to leave the European Union (EU). But what does Brexit mean for technology and security professionals around the world in the public and private sectors?

June 19, 2016

How Terrorists' Use of Social Media Points to the Future

What can we learn from the tragic global events of the past 10 days? The use of social media is front and center in tracking online and offline crimes, especially terrorist activity. How can we prepare for tomorrow?

June 12, 2016

3D Government: How Will Augmented Reality (AR) Disrupt the Future of Technology?

Bold claims are again being made by hot new startups and the technology giants about the coming age of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) applications. While most of the focus has been on gaming, retail and travel, the impact for governments could be huge. Here’s why.

June 5, 2016

Good Questions Regarding Online Threats

What are the top cyberthreats currently impacting public- and private-sector enterprises? Here are the questions that cybersecurity industry experts are talking about.

May 29, 2016

Inaugural Global Automotive Cybersecurity Summit Coming to Detroit

A new cutting-edge technology event with cybersecurity solutions for connected and autonomous cars is being organized by Billington CyberSecurity. The cyber summit will include CEOs in the auto industry as well as top government and technology leaders from around the world.

May 22, 2016

Beyond Spear Phishing: How to Address Whaling and More

First, there was phishing … then came spear phishing … and now there is whaling — and other new sophisticated social engineering techniques. The bad guys are modifying their deceptive practices. Here’s what you need to know.

May 15, 2016

Book Review: Cybersecurity for Everyone

How do you secure your home or small business network? A recently released book by Terence L. Sadler offers practical, helpful answers.

May 8, 2016

State Technology Leaders Focus on Procurement, Cybersecurity and Agile

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) held their Midyear Conference in Baltimore this past week. There were plenty of hot topics on the agenda, including: enabling innovation through agile software development, the continuing need for procurement reform and a big push on cybersecurity.

May 1, 2016

7 Reasons You Should Care if the United Kingdom (UK) Leaves the European Union (EU)

On June 23, the world will be watching as the citizens of the UK decide whether to remain in the EU. The ramifications of this vote go far beyond Great Britain or Europe. History shows us that American interests and our future security are directly tied to this “special relationship.” Here’s why you should care what happens.

April 24, 2016

Will a Smartphone Replace Your PC?

Will you buy another desktop computer or laptop? Or, can your smartphone meet your technology needs? Should your business continue buying PCs? The IT infrastructure industry is divided, but the answer affects more than you think. Here’s why.

April 17, 2016

Autism and Technology: What Can Governments Do?

April is Autism Awareness Month, and there are plenty of new developments to highlight. The number of private-sector initiatives is amazing, but can governments do more? What can innovative technologies do to aid early intervention for autism spectrum disorders? Currently technology is playing a significant role for adults with autism. That being said, should governments be doing more to hire and help these talented individuals with technical skills? Here’s my view.

April 10, 2016

7 Ways to Be More Innovative

You’ve probably heard the phrase “innovate or die.” But not everyone got the memo. So how does innovation really work in practical terms at the office? Regardless of whether you tend to be an innovator or protector, here are seven ways to help your business and career.

April 3, 2016

Developing Government Cyber-Leaders

As the government pay gap grows larger with the private sector, where will the next generation of government cybersecurity leadership come from? What's the best background to enable success? Who should consider government cybersecurity roles? The public and private sectors are battling a growing list of global cyberthreats. With more data breaches, cyberattacks targeting critical infrastructure and new Internet of Things vulnerabilities, the competition for competent cybersecurity increases.

March 27, 2016

Ransomware Emergency: What Can You Do?

The rise in ransomware has taken a dramatic turn for the worse in 2016. Several hospitals recently declared states of emergency. Meanwhile, thousands of global businesses and consumers are now becoming victims of hacking attacks leading to extortion. This very serious situation requires the immediate attention of everyone from PC owners to small businesses to the large governments. Here’s the problem and what actions you must take now to protect yourself.

March 20, 2016

Hacking March Madness: How Cybercriminals Exploit Popular Sports Events

We’re in mid-March, which means the NCAA College Basketball Tournament is in full swing. But there is more than one way to bust your March Madness bracket, and cybercrooks are also working overtime to grab a piece of the cash. Here’s how (and why) major sporting events are top targets for global hackers.

March 13, 2016

Two New Cybersecurity Reports Offer Legislative Opportunities and Data Breach Scenarios

This is a tale of two studies. The first report from the Governing Institute was sponsored by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and AT&T, and covers the intriguing results of a state government legislative survey on cyber. The second reports offers a “Data Breach Digest” from Verizon which elaborates on 18 different data breach scenarios worth considering. Both reports are free and bring excellent recommendations and worthwhile opportunities.

March 6, 2016

Security Trends From RSA Conferences

As I flew back to Michigan after another RSA Conference this week, I thought about the highlights, takeaways and major themes in the security industry right now. At the same time, I couldn’t help but look back and reflect on the past several RSA Conferences in San Francisco on a personal level. Bottom line: These RSA Conferences tell quite a bit about where we have been and where are we heading in cyberspace — on both a personal and industry level.

February 28, 2016

The Biggest Trouble with Smartphones

Everybody loves their smartphone, with global adoption soaring and new helpful apps popping up daily. Faster speeds, new models and plenty of competition to lower prices make your mobile device the center of technology innovation. But is there an ‘Achilles Heel’ to watch out for? The answer is yes — and here’s what you can do to help protect yourself.

February 22, 2016

Book Review: 'Hacked Again'

Scott Schober is small business owner who tells intriguing stories about how his company was hacked — and what happened next. This easy-to-read book is a good primer on the importance of online security for business owners, but it also shows how easily identity theft can happen to anyone, even a cybersecurity expert. Best of all, this book offers practical security advice with helpful steps that we all can follow to secure our corner of cyberspace.

February 13, 2016

Can 'Hacking Back' Be An Effective Cyber Answer?

With the exponential growth in data breaches over the past few years, the concept of ‘hacking back’ is growing in popularity. Proponents ask: If I can use a gun for self-defense in my home, why can’t I similarly ‘hack back’ against attackers who invade my cyberspace? Let’s examine that premise from different perspectives.

February 7, 2016

Help! When ‘Things’ Can Send Emails

Does using ‘smart’ devices mean that our inboxes will be even more overflowing with more email? For now, probably.

January 30, 2016

Transforming Cyber and Infrastructure Security: An Interview with the DHS Cyber Chief

An exclusive interview with Dr. Phyllis Schneck, deputy under secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications for the National Protection and Programs Directorate within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

January 24, 2016

Interview with Will Pelgrin and Phil Reitinger on the New Global Cyber Alliance

What is the new Global Cyber Alliance (GCA)? Why is it important? Here is an exclusive interview with GCA co-founder and chair Will Pelgrin, as well as the new CEO and president of GCA — Phil Reitinger.

January 21, 2016

‘Anonymous’ Targets Michigan, Activates #OpFlint

#OpFlint promises online attacks against Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration in response to the water emergency in the city of Flint.

January 17, 2016

Where Next on Internet of Things (IoT) Security?

The 2016 edition of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) just wrapped-up as the North American International Auto Show sprang into full swing. So what do they tell us about the state of cybersecurity for the exploding Internet of Things (IoT) market?

January 10, 2016

Seven Career Lessons From Kirk Cousins

You are next in line on your organization's depth chart. For a long time, you just wait in the wings for your opportunity to lead. For years, you watch, and learn, and practice, and occasionally get a few opportunities to show what you can do. And then, you get promoted. New management elevates you to #1. But can you succeed? You make a lot of early mistakes. Critics outnumber supporters. Nevertheless, you overcome and excel. How? There are important career lessons to learn from Kirk Cousins

January 4, 2016

Most Popular Security Blogs from the Past Year

What were the most popular ‘Lohrmann on Cybersecurity and Infrastructure’ blogs written in 2015? Viewer metrics are in, and they tell an interesting story. Here are the results, along with some intriguing trends and links to the top content.

December 27, 2015

The Top 16 Security Predictions for 2016

More security predictions than ever before. As I examined hundreds of expert forecasts for 2016 and beyond, with cyber trends and predicted technology events from top companies, it is hard to be optimistic about our online situation. And yet, the combined predictions tell us an important story about online life. So where is cyberspace heading? What surprises await us? Here's your annual one-stop roundup of what security experts are telling us will happen next.

December 19, 2015

2015: The Year Data Breaches Became Intimate

Something new, even unprecedented, happened this year in our cyber world. The most noteworthy data breaches were not focused on financial data. Here’s a data breach recap from 2015 – along with my views on what these events tell us.

December 13, 2015

Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network RFP Approved

The FirstNet Board approved the release of an RFP to build, operate and deploy a nationwide public safety broadband network this week. Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate named 10 people to a new Interoperability Advisory Panel. So are next-generation interoperable communications for nationwide first-responders finally getting close?

December 6, 2015

Cybersecurity in Latin America

What is the current situation regarding cybersecurity in Latin America? To answer this question, I turned to Mr. Carter Schoenberg, who is a respected industry security expert who recently started a cybersecurity company in Panama. Here’s the informative interview.

November 28, 2015

5 Online Mistakes to Avoid During the Holidays

The holiday season has arrived and so have the opportunities for Internet deals, sending and receiving holiday cards and many more online activities. Nevertheless, with the good comes the bad – as phishing scams, one-time bargains that are too good to be true and other cyber traps can lead to major headaches. Here are five common online mistakes to avoid as we head towards another New Year’s Eve.

November 21, 2015

After Paris Attacks: What Is the Future of Encryption?

The recent round of global terrorist attacks have reignited the homeland security versus personal privacy debate. Law enforcement officials point to the apparent use of encryption by ISIS terrorists as proof that encrypted communications need “back doors” to protect the public. But many security experts disagree. So what is the future for encrypted communication as we head into 2016?

November 16, 2015

Get Ready for Next-Generation Endpoint Security

Advanced cyberthreats, zero-day exploits, sophisticated malware, ransomware and more. These are just a few of the daily challenges that enterprises face as they try to protect their network endpoints each and every day. How can it be done? Enter next-generation endpoint security products and services. Here’s an overview.

November 7, 2015

Interview with Florida’s Technology and Security Leadership

Where is Florida heading regarding cybersecurity in government? What are the top priorities and hot projects? Hear what the Florida state CIO and CISO have to say in this exclusive interview.

November 1, 2015

Emerging Cyberthreats: What, When, Where and How?

Emerging cyberthreats are a hot topic at cybersecurity summits, in executive boardrooms and remain a top priority with back-office security teams. Here's what you need to know about where we've been, where we are and where online security threats are going.

October 24, 2015

Governments Need an Internet of Things Strategy

From smart drones to smart homes to smart cars that drive themselves, the world is dramatically changing all around us. So are governments ready to take advantage of these new innovative opportunities emerging within the Internet of Things (IoT)? Or, as almost everything gets connected to the Internet, could these newly connected devices become “Trojan Horses” that inadvertently bring the next generation of data breaches? What’s being done globally in the public sector with IoT right now?

October 18, 2015

What Are Government Chief Information Officers Doing Now?

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) held its annual conference in Salt Lake City, Utah, this past week. So what were the highlights? From the Internet of Things (IoT) to cloud computing to data center consolidation, which projects, technologies and issues rose to the top of the agenda? Most important, what’s on the minds of government CIOs, and what projects are they actually implementing as we move into 2016?

October 10, 2015

From Mississippi to Utah: Cybersecurity Awareness Month is Front and Center

It is October, so National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCAM) is front and center from sea to shining sea. But attention on information security, along with events and helpful publications, have evolved over the years. It’s time to take another look at the new resources along with helpful tools and relationships that can last long after your Halloween candy runs out.

October 4, 2015

North Carolina IT Leaders Share New Technology Agency Plans

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory just established the new Department of Information Technology as the single source of accountability and authority over state government technology projects. State CIO Chris Estes will lead the consolidation effort, along with executive support from his leadership team, including Chief Information Risk Officer Maria Thompson. So who are these leaders? What are their plans and priorities? Where are they heading regarding information security? These are just a few of the questions answered in this exclusive interview.

September 27, 2015

Will the New Cyber Understanding with China Bring Change?

A new 'understanding' on cybersecurity was announced this past week during Chinese President Xi Jinping's formal state visit. But while this agreement certainly offers a positive step forward for security in cyberspace, many questions remain unanswered.

September 20, 2015

For Elected Officials: A Guide to Address Online Security

Elected officials often fail to prioritize cybersecurity until after a data breach when it's too late. So what are the important security issues and actions that are needed by state and local elected officials right now? A new guide by Governing magazine and CGI was just released to answer that question.

September 11, 2015

Where Next for Government Cybersecurity?

On the 14th anniversary of 9/11/01, there are plenty of reasons to be thankful regarding public safety in America. And yet, there is also a growing list of cyberthreats that are grabbing news headlines almost daily. To help understand where we are today and where we are going regarding federal government cybersecurity initiatives, I interviewed Dr. Andy Ozment, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security assistant secretary, who is the new point person for the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center.

September 6, 2015

Free Open Source Security Tools Offer Intelligence-Based Defense

Lockheed Martin recently released new open source tools to help defend enterprises from cyberattacks. The system, called Laika BOSS, offers a malware detection and analysis framework for security analysts to share intelligence with other cyber defenders worldwide. Here's my interview with leading cyberexperts who are offering cutting-edge insights and workable solutions to emerging battles in cyberspace.

August 30, 2015

What to Do About Phishing?

Phishing and spear-phishing are growing problems. The clever enticements to click are getting more sophisticated and more targeted than ever. The data breach costs are mounting. What can your organization do to take phishing awareness and response to the next level?

August 23, 2015

Reinventing: What Government Leaders Can Learn From Tim Tebow

Many government technology leaders are struggling. From national headlines to local audit findings, the majority of the news has not been good. Meanwhile, public trust in government as a whole is near historic lows. What can be done? Is it time for reinvention? Back to the drawing board? If so, there is a lot to learn from the journey and actions of Tim Tebow.

August 16, 2015

The Security Startup Challenge: Winners Offer Innovative Ideas

The technology and security industries are struggling to keep up with an ever-growing list of problems and cyberattack vectors. There has been a consistent call for new solutions to address evolving cyberspace challenges. One popular answer: New innovative startup companies to help. In order to accelerate these companies, the 'Security Startup Challenge' was formed earlier this year by Kaspersky Lab and several partners. And now, we have the winners.

August 9, 2015

Intelligence Sharing Partnerships Are Needed to Improve Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity

A new survey of top IT executives reconfirms the findings from other recent cybersecurity studies regarding the online defense at utilities and other vitally important public- and private-sector organizations. The report outlines what is good and what needs improvement in our online defense of critical infrastructure facilities.

August 2, 2015

Hacking: When Your White Hat Is Really a Black Hat

A series of recent news headlines reveal cybersecurity experts, who were being paid to defend networks, battle malware and fight cybercrime, were actually black hat hackers. What happened and what can be done to address this growing trend? Is your enterprise prepared?

July 25, 2015

Talking Cyber: Ten Tips for Conference Speakers, Supervisors and Parents

Talking about security in effective ways is hard – whether the audience is an auditorium full of professionals or a small room at home with a few children. Here are some tips to help.

July 19, 2015

Do You Really Know Your Network?

How well do you know your IT infrastructure? Who is communicating with whom across your network backbone? What systems are bandwidth starved? With legacy systems, PII data, hundreds of networks, complicated databases, hybrid clouds, data warehouses, countless mobile devices and outsourced functions needing 7x24 access, how do you determine what's truly secure? As we prepare for the new Internet of Things (IoT) era, here are some questions that need answers now.

July 12, 2015

The Big Halt: 7 Lessons from Recent Computer Outages

On July 8, 2015, a string of major computer outages occurred at approximately the same time - grabbing global media attention. Significant operational disruptions occurred as a result of computer incidents at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and United Airlines. The nation briefly 'woke-up' to our reliance on technology and got a small taste of the fear that may come if a cyberattack cripples critical infrastructure. What lessons can we learn from these incidents? How can public and private-sector enterprises better prepare for more inevitable disruptions?

July 5, 2015

Should We Start Over with the Internet?

Network failures. Colossal data breaches. Global online privacy problems. The bad news reignites debate. Do Internet troubles necessitate a new start? Is it time to push the 'reset' button? But others say that cyberspace is improving and will go much further -- even solving a long list of historic problems. One thing is indisputable: The Internet is changing rapidly before our eyes.

June 28, 2015

False Alert: Can You Really Trust that Tweet for Emergency Communications?

A recent article in The New York Times describes a highly coordinated disinformation campaign using social media. This scary development raises new questions about the reliability of alerts and other emergency communications that rely on social media platforms. Will disinformation campaigns become a growing trend that will undermine recent advances in spreading important information during emergencies?

June 21, 2015

Data Breach: Why We Need a Scale

Data breaches are becoming much more common. Most states have laws mandating the public disclosure of data breaches where personally identifiable information (PII) is at risk. Cyberinsurance policies even cover data breach costs. However, not all data breaches are the same. We need a data breach scale. Here's why...

June 13, 2015

Top Strategies from Ohio Government's Technology and Security Leaders

We are continuing the series of interviews with top CIOs and CISOs from around the nation regarding the best state and local government cybersecurity strategies. This week, we turn toward the Buckeye State to learn from two respected executive leaders. At a time when the federal government is reeling from a major OPM data breach, this security discussion has never been more important.

June 6, 2015

A Life of Lies and Spies: Interview with Author Alan B. Trabue on his Real-Life CIA Adventures

Alan B. Trabue worked for the CIA for over 38 years, and he has hundreds of true stories to tell about domestic and foreign agents and lies and spies. He has just published an amazing book that tells about his career as a covert operations polygraph interrogator with exciting travels all over the world. For anyone who is interested in polygraph exams or for those who are intrigued by the complexities of intelligence operations around the world, you must read this book. Here is a brief book preview and an interview with the author of 'A Life of Lies and Spies.'

May 30, 2015

Interview with Retiring MS-ISAC Founder Will Pelgrin and Incoming CIS CEO Jane Lute

Will Pelgrin started the MS-ISAC more than a decade ago, and he is a leading voice in government cyberdefense. Tomorrow is his last day with the Center for Internet Security, and I caught up with him and new CEO Jane Lute to discuss the past, the present and the future of global cybersecurity -- especially within governments.

May 25, 2015

Smart Cities Resources: Who, What, When, Where and How?

Everyone is talking about smart cities. And yet, new public- and private-sector questions are emerging as more organizations engage with this global technology megatrend. So how can you take these opportunities to the next level? Who are the leaders within this hot Internet of Things (IoT) category? Which academic studies and white papers offer best practices and the most helpful resources to take your region to the next level? What cyber-risks are emerging? Here are answers and resources to consider.

May 18, 2015

Cyber Terrorism: How Dangerous is the ISIS Cyber Caliphate Threat?

Industry experts disagree on whether the Islamic State’s ability to mount a dangerous cyberattack is a top concern or an emerging online threat or completely overblown. But one thing is not in doubt, ISIS is making news headlines in 2015 for their exploits in cyberspace. In my view, ISIS is an emerging online threat to keep a close watch on. Here’s why.

May 11, 2015

Federal Cybersecurity Legislation

The latest bills, privacy concerns and information-sharing actions.

May 3, 2015

Middle East Cybersecurity and Infrastructure: Dubai Offers a Different Model

I traveled to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) this past week to present the opening keynote at the Gulf Information Security Expo & Conference (GISEC 2015) in Dubai. The event offered a refreshing mix of leading global voices on security and technology topics. But most surprising, the Gulf region's public and private sector executive leaders who presented, the companies exhibiting and the amazing city as a whole offered attendees a different perspective and a positive model for the current cybersecurity and technology infrastructure challenges in the Middle East and the world as a whole.

April 24, 2015

At RSA Conference 2015: Government Announcements Top Highlights

Attendance records were probably broken, and there were numerous very good sessions. Still, surprisingly, government announcements may have been the highlight of the week.

April 19, 2015

Security is Job One for Washington State Government Technology Leadership

We are continuing the series of interviews with leading state government CIOs and CISOs from around the nation. This week, we turn to Washington state and its security priorities and technology plans.

April 11, 2015

Hacking Critical Infrastructure is Accelerating and More Destructive

A new report released this week by Trend Micro and the Organization of American States (OAS) shows a dramatic increase in cyberattacks directed against critical infrastructure owners and operators.

April 5, 2015

Seven Ways to Gain Support for Cyber Programs in Government

Are you having trouble getting the needed resources for your cybersecurity program or key projects in government? Is staffing, funding or gaining executive support not adequate to get the job done right? Do you want to strengthen your influence and trust with management? While there are no easy answers, these ideas may help.

March 29, 2015

Enterprises Prepare for Windows 10: Microsoft IE to Become New Legacy Replacement

Just as many government organizations wrap up enterprise XP migrations a year after initially planned, it's time to start ramping up another major infrastructure effort. Microsoft Windows 10 will be arriving this summer. What new features are coming and is it time to prepare your strategic upgrade plan?

March 22, 2015

Oakland University Cyber Summit: A Unique, Inspiring Model Run by the Students

On Friday, March 20, 2015, CyberOU, the student cybersecurity club at Oakland University, held its second annual Cyber Summit in Michigan. Here's why CyberOU is a student-run organization for others around the world to emulate.

March 15, 2015

How Do the Technology Leaders at the Port of Portland Protect Sensitive Data?

We are continuing a series of educational interviews with state and local government technology and security leaders around the nation. This week we visit an intriguing local government in the Pacific Northwest part of the country to learn more about its overall mission and how it keeps customer data safe.

March 7, 2015

Missouri Technology Leaders Share Cyberprotection Strategies

What cybersecurity priorities, challenges, actions and plans are Missouri's CIO and CISO working on right now?

March 1, 2015

FCC Ruling on Net Neutrality: What's Next?

By a 3-to-2 vote along party lines, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) passed new rules on Net neutrality last week. The rules establish the Internet as a utility, but court battles loom before the FCC actions can take effect. Here's what happened, a summary of the news coverage, what it all means, reaction from different sources and what is likely to happen next.

February 23, 2015

Governors' Briefing on Cybersecurity: People are Everything

'States Leading on Cybersecurity' was the name of session at National Governors Association (NGA) Annual Winter Meeting on Sunday. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson addressed looming DHS shutdown impacts as well as federal / state opportunities to work together to share cyberthreats and other critical information across the public and private sectors.

February 14, 2015

Opinion: White House Summit Missed a Larger Opportunity on Cybersecurity

The White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection at Stanford University was a very good event with meaningful outcomes. But it could have been much more.

February 8, 2015

Indiana to Launch New IN-ISAC and Enhance Cyberdefense Programs

Unique Indiana state government partnership with Purdue University will also utilize private-sector expertise to defend state networks from next-generation cyberattacks. This breaking news demonstrates that cyberdefense is a top priority for Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

February 1, 2015

Cyber disruption: Is your government ready?

Governments around the globe are rushing to prepare for computer-generated threats that can cause real-world calamity to our way of life. And while opinions vary on the likelihood of human error causing a major crisis or hostile cyberthreats causing severe societal disruptions, few argue against being prepared. So how are leading governments getting ready for inevitable cyber emergencies?

January 25, 2015

New Resolutions: Seven Team Building Actions for Government Leaders

As you think about resolutions for the coming year, or the next four years in government, don't forget your people. Here are seven important actions to consider.

January 19, 2015

State of the Union: Ready for bipartisan cyber action

This should be the year that significant bipartisan progress is made on cybersecurity legislation, with new laws set to pass on issues ranging from data breach notification to sharing sensitive cyber intelligence between the public and private sectors. In fact, since President Obama and Republican congressional leaders can't agree on much else, cybersecurity action is moving to center stage.

January 11, 2015

Virtual Reality Will Be More Than a Game Changer

The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas drew huge crowds again this year, with audiences seeing, touching and enjoying the hottest new gadgets and technology. From cars that drive you to drones that are smart to 4K high-definition TVs, it was all there. But the biggest story of all, may be the virtual reality (VR) revolution. VR tools and devices will transform 21st century IT infrastructure.

January 4, 2015

7 Essential IT Infrastructure Strategies that Customers Need Now

As we begin 2015, what do your customers really need from you? What is your government technology infrastructure plan of action for the coming year? Here are seven must-have strategies for enterprises to enable long-lasting innovation.

December 28, 2014

The Top 15 Security Predictions for 2015

Predictions are everywhere. Most security companies now make them. As I examined 2015 lists and checked them twice, everyone is saying that our online situation will get worse. But how much worse? What surprises await us? Here's what technology experts are saying - along with my naughty and nice labels.

December 21, 2014

2014: The year cyber danger doubled

Cybersecurity stories were more popular than ever in 2014, with the word 'cyber' showing up in front of topics ranging from security to shopping scams to global online attacks. But no matter how we rename, reclassify or reanalyze the data in cyberspace, it is clear that the dollars spent, problems encountered and attention given cyber has virtually doubled in 2014.

December 14, 2014

Despite lower pay, how can successful leaders change culture in government?

Recent reports show that morale is low across the nation for government employees. Are there answers that can help even as public sector pay lags behind the private sector? Here's an example to consider.

December 7, 2014

BYOD Is Everywhere: Wear Your Own Device Is Next

Everyone is bringing their own devices to work. But is sensitive data being secured properly on our smartphones and tablets? Soon, new technology will be worn wherever we go. Is your enterprise preparing for WYOD?

November 30, 2014

Tips to Avoid Holiday Shopping Scams Online

Another Cyber Monday, and more online sales records will be set. What can you do to protect yourself at home and work?

November 22, 2014

Michigan Governor Snyder Releases New Cyber Initiative for Next Four Years

The North American International Cyber Summit was held in Detroit's Cobo Hall on Nov. 16-17, 2014, and Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder unveiled an updated 'Michigan Cyber Initiative 2015.' Here are the details on the event and the new cyber plan that's a model for the nation.

November 16, 2014

Securing The Oil & Natural Gas Industries

What can we learn from the annual American Petroleum Institute (API) Cybersecurity Conference in Houston? Many things, but nothing more important than we are all part of the same cyber ecosystem. We sink or swim together in cyberspace.

November 9, 2014

Interpreting the Election: What Are the Government Security and Technology Impacts?

Back in the spring of 2014, speculation was already growing about the significant impact that technology and cybersecurity might have on the 2014 midterm elections.

November 1, 2014

Protecting Data in Minnesota: State Government Security Leaders Share New Strategies

The government security leadership series continues with another set of CIO/CISO interviews. This week we travel to Minnesota.

October 26, 2014

Can Big Data Stop Ebola?

As the headlines around the world continue to focus on the spreading Ebola health crisis, how can technology help? Effective answers must take advantage of recent advances in big data.

October 19, 2014

Job Change Checklist: Seven Things to Consider Before Elections

Once every four years, most state and local governments go through a multi-month period of major upheaval. Regardless of which political party wins in the November midterm elections, major executive turnover usually occurs at the highest levels of government. This fall and winter is one of those times. How can you prepare?

October 13, 2014

Highlights from the 2014 Wisconsin Cyber Security Summit

Cybersecurity protections in Wisconsin government took another step forward last week with an impressive cyber summit that included Gov. Scott Walker, Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar (the adjutant general in Wisconsin) and security leaders from around the nation and the world.

October 5, 2014

Cyber Security Awareness Month 2014: The Best and Worst of Times

The 11th annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month kicked off on Oct. 1, with perhaps the biggest set of activities ever planned. But on day two of the festivities, a huge JPMorgan Chase security breach stole the headlines.

September 28, 2014

The Secrets of Innovation: Government Leaders Need to Think Like Entrepreneurs

The speaker was Facebook VP Vaughan Smith. "We all know that innovation is key to success, but how do we innovate at Facebook? The first key to innovation is moving fast, very fast," he said.

September 21, 2014

MS-ISAC: Cybersecurity Collaboration is Needed Now More than Ever

As cyber leaders from across federal, state, local and tribal governments prepare to gather for another annual meeting, the future of government cybersecurity in our local communities now hangs in the balance.

September 14, 2014

Mobile Technology Transforming Global Transportation: Highlights from ITS World Congress & Michigan Digital Summit

There were two very different events this past week in Michigan, but both offered similar messages. The Intelligent Transport System (ITS) World Congress and the Michigan Digital Summit pointed to the radical transformation occurring right now in transportation. There is a paradigm shift occurring using smart transportation systems and mobile technology that enables 'realistic solutions to our global mobility, safety, and environmental challenges.'

September 7, 2014

CIO Solutions Gallery: How Can We Enable Culture Change?

Whether the topic is modernizing health care, attracting retaining the right talent, the role(s) of the Chief Data Officer (or the new Chief Digital Officer), the value of big data or even securing enterprises from insider threats, the answer entails culture change. So how do we begin?

August 31, 2014

Robots are Coming: Even to the Cloud

Just as mobile technology and cloud computing became a normal part of our lives, along comes the next set of disruptive innovations that will radically change the way we work and play. Get ready for robots to appear in virtually every area of life. But just as with the Internet, there will also be a dark side.

August 23, 2014

Play a Game - Get a Job: GCHQ's New Tool to Recruit Cyber Talent

It's time to get in the game. Just as in the 1984 movie 'The Last Starfighter,' being the best at a game could lead to a future that exceeds your wildest imagination. The British Intelligence equivalent to NSA is offering a challenge to play a game, with a great cyber job as the prize for winners.

August 16, 2014

How to be Safe Online Using Passwords - With Another Step

The National Cyber Security Alliance is taking the online safety message to a city near you. A national campaign is spreading the word that multifactor authentication is easy to use and available now — often for free.

August 9, 2014

After Russian hackers breach 1.2 billion records: Where is cybercrime going next?

More cyberdefense action is needed, but many people seem content to hit the snooze button for now. Meanwhile, Black Hat speakers offer some policy advice to help, while smart Americans change passwords - again.

August 3, 2014

Thank you Michigan - For the opportunity and privilege of government service

August 1, 2014, was my last full day as Michigan Government's Chief Security Officer (CSO). As I look back at seventeen years of action-packed public service, I will remember the wonderful people who made it all possible and who served (and continue to serve) our citizens so well.

July 27, 2014

A new cyber exercise: Test your security team's incident response capabilities

The Michigan Cyber Civilian Corps, state and local government cyber analysts and the West Michigan Cyber Security Consortium participated in an attack-defend-respond tabletop exercise in a virtual city called Alphaville, which exists within the Michigan Cyber Range. Here's why it matters to a town near you.

July 20, 2014

Outlook for federal action in cyberspace: Expect new net neutrality rules but no cyber laws anytime soon

As we head into the mid-term elections, what cyber policy action is likely in 2014?

July 12, 2014

Are hacker movies becoming reality?

Recent cyber stories resemble plots from James Bond films. Can you tell the difference?

July 6, 2014

Where Next After Cyberbullying Law Struck Down?

As global online harassment concerns rise, workable solutions seem elusive.

June 29, 2014

Perspectives after the Nebraska Cyber Security Conference: Government leaders share insights

A Spartan fan visits Husker Country to learn about cybersecurity in Lincoln.

June 22, 2014

The Internet of Things (IoT) is taking off in smart directions

Coming IoT growth surge will both utilize and surpass cloud computing's appeal.

June 15, 2014

World Cup infrastructure in Brazil: The good, the bad and the protests

What has Brazil done to improve technology and other infrastructure to prepare to host the world?

June 8, 2014

Building Next Generation Networks

Are you ready to handle big data, more video, new firewalls and an exploding number of mobile devices?

May 31, 2014

Elevating cybersecurity leadership: Perspectives from Montana's CIO and CISO

A look at cyber in "Big Sky Country."

May 25, 2014

Global governments enable mobile payments

Why has our US adoption been so slow?

May 17, 2014

Cyber leaders in government: An interview with the Nevada CIO and CISO

David Gustafson and Chris Ipsen offer experience, vision and proven information security leadership.

May 11, 2014

Work-life balance: Does your career fit your family?

On Mother's Day, it's time to take another look at this complex issue.

May 4, 2014

The identity crisis within social networks

Facebook, Google, LinkedIn and others want to be your trusted data broker

April 27, 2014

Digital Deception: Watch out for click fraud, shady metrics and biased reviews online

Tempting the click is everywhere in cyberspace. Keep asking: Is that really true?

April 19, 2014

Pennsylvania Cyber Leaders Share Insights

CIO and CISO offer the nation best-practices to mitigate cyberthreats.

April 13, 2014

Fixing the Heartbleed Bug is essential: But don't forget Windows XP migration

Security pros are feeling the pressure. Are you ready for another action-packed week?

April 5, 2014

Interviews with top state government security leaders: CIO/CSO profile for Delaware

We can learn from front-line government experts who are 'in the arena.' Delaware is raising the bar for the nation in many areas of cybersecurity.

March 30, 2014

Implementing the Cybersecurity Framework within State and Local Governments

A key NIST Cybersecurity Framework kickoff event was held in Washington DC this week. What happened, what can we learn from the event and what's next?

March 22, 2014

Interviews with top state government security leaders: CIO/CISO profile for Mississippi

I am kicking-off a series of interviews with state and local government CIOs and CISOs from around the country. The goal is simple: To listen to their words and learn from their ideas and actions.

March 16, 2014

Big data analytics versus privacy: How can they both win?

Can these hot trends mix, or are they like oil and water? Can we find middle ground on data? Or, will these two trains collide? Do you feel the tension building yet?

March 9, 2014

Ten Recommendations for Security Awareness Programs

How do we improve the security culture in our organizations? It's time to take another look at what works for security awareness programs.

March 2, 2014

What's next for privacy?

RSA Conference sessions ask: Who can you really trust to protect your data online?

February 21, 2014

What the 2014 RSA Conference means for government: Top things to do

Even if you are not going to California, you still need to pay attention.

February 15, 2014

NIST Cybersecurity Framework: Five reasons why it matters for your infrastructure

This new approach matters more than most people realize.

February 8, 2014

After Target breach: Get ready for credit cards with chips and PINs (or EMV cards)

Yes, federal, state and local governments are impacted.

January 30, 2014

Look to Israel for new cybersecurity ideas, innovation, partnerships and inspiration

CyberTech 2014 demonstrates disruptive tech solutions

January 18, 2014

The 2013 National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP)

Why it matters to a community near you.

January 12, 2014

A mission for big data in government: How hyper-personalization can transform customer service

What do we really do with all that data we collect in government? The answer must be to improve customer service and provide a radical transformation in the way governments interact with residents. Anything less will bring big problems. Here's why.

January 5, 2014

Can computer security be easier? It depends

Quick Pop Quiz: Don't worry, this will be easy.

December 28, 2013

14 Predictions on Government IT for 2014

7 Predictions for optimists and 7 predictions for pessimists for government IT in 2014.

December 22, 2013

More bandwidth please: Why consumer trust is at stake in the battle for control of Internet's pipes

New global fiber, with faster pipes, and end-to-end deliver, owned by tech giants like Google, are a central part of the plan to deliver trust.

December 15, 2013

Reviewing 2013 cyber news: Snowden is the top story

2013 was another eventful year in the brief history of cyberspace - with more online holiday shopping, more spear-phishing, some big government project failures and more virtual surprises than ever before.

December 10, 2013

The Top 2014 Government IT Headache: Windows XP Migration

November 29, 2013

What's next for mobile payments?

A few years back, experts predicted that the smartphone would replace the wallet by now. The trouble is, most of these predictions were way too optimistic.

November 23, 2013

Top five mistakes new IT security leaders make

What traps do new security leaders face? How can they avoid them? Where can they go for help?

November 16, 2013

Black Friday and Cyber Monday: The good, bad and ugly - with tips to help online

Everyone loves a deal. And geeks, nerds, government technology staff and cyber pros especially like deals on new technology.

November 10, 2013

Five reasons security is back as the top CIO priority

A familiar hot topic is back in the #1 priority slot for state CIOs. But why is cybersecurity back at the top of the 'must do' list?

November 3, 2013

Why do many big IT projects fail in government?

As the eyes of the entire nation are focused on whether Healthcare.gov will regroup and still be successful. Skeptical citizens are raising wider questions on big government IT projects once again.

October 26, 2013

Cybersecurity Industry Set to Grow Tenfold

Everyone knows that IT security is hot around the globe right now. But it's about to get much hotter, according to Richard Stiennon, who was the lunch keynote at the 2013 Michigan Cyber Summit yesterday.

October 23, 2013

Watch the Michigan Cyber Summit Live

The 2013 Michigan Cyber Summit is Friday, October 25. You can watch it live on the Internet or access sessions on-demand after the event.

October 20, 2013

State CIOs answer questions on cybersecurity and disaster recovery (DR)

What do state government Chief Information Officers (CIOs) believe are the greatest enterprise risks in 2013?

October 12, 2013

Data Leakage: Rogue IT problems and solutions

Is rogue IT threatening to cause a major breach?

October 5, 2013

Unintended consequences: The government shutdown is hitting home in surprising ways

From home mortgages to university grants to interns enhancing their career prospects, the federal government shutdown of 2013 is hitting home - and hitting hard.

September 29, 2013

Governors Release Compelling Cyber Roadmap for States

The NGA released a new compelling strategy paper called Act and Adjust: A Call to Action for Governors for Cybersecurity.

September 22, 2013

October Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Boom or Shutdown Bust?

Another National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) begins on October 1, 2013, and this could be the best or one of the worst ever. This is why...

September 14, 2013

Cybersecurity intelligence and new legislation: What's next?

The Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA) organization just held an excellent summit on CSPAN that is worth a second look.

September 9, 2013

Full Inbox: How spam is making a comeback

Spam is back. But this new spam is harder to deal with. Here are some tips to help.

September 1, 2013

'Major cyber event' coming, says Secretary Napolitano

Outgoing Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano warned that a major cyber attack is coming

August 26, 2013

Dreaming big on new technology: Future or fantasy?

There have been a number of futuristic technology ventures recently announced that are either visionary game-changers or a huge waste of money.

August 18, 2013

Blackout 2003: Governments Are Still Responding Ten Years Later

Where were you when the lights went out in 2003?

August 12, 2013

Tracking by Advertisers Depends on Trust

How much tracking by advertisers is ok? The answer relies on trust...

August 4, 2013

Michigan Governor Snyder Leads by Example on Cyber Awareness Training

"And my challenge to each of you is to take the cyber awareness training... like me..."

July 28, 2013

How to Strengthen Public-Private Partnerships on Cyber

But how do we take these vital security goals to the next level? What are the desired outcomes and corresponding actions required to strengthen our mutual cyber defenses? Where do you start?

July 21, 2013

No Service: When the Internet goes down on vacation

No service? My Verizon connection has great all week why now? Something was wrong.

July 15, 2013

What is the next big thing in technology?

Enquiring minds typically want to know: What is the next big thing in technology? The nice thing about that question is that you can go almost anywhere with the answer.

July 7, 2013

Will stronger EU penalties deter cybercrime?

Early this week the European Union (EU) mandated national maximum sentences of at least two years in prison for attempting to illegally access information systems. Will these tougher penalties deter cybercrime?

June 29, 2013

Insider Threats Take Center Stage

Are insiders or outsiders the greatest IT threat to enterprise security? Lately, the pendulum seems to be swinging towards the insider threat.

June 24, 2013

An Interview with Teri Takai on FirstNet

Ms. Teresa M. (Teri) Takai, who is the CIO for the United States Department of Defense (DoD), has been an exceptional leader in government for more than a decade. She served as state government CIO in both Michigan and California before joining DoD as CIO in 2010. Ms. Takai was appointed to the FirstNet Board of Directors in August 2012.

June 17, 2013

Free BYOD Webinar: Keeping Your Data Safe in a Mobile World

There is a free webinar coming up on the topic of BYOD. The online event will be on Tuesday, June 18, at 2 PM (EST).

June 16, 2013

Edward Snowden is No Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Do the ends justify the means in the case of Edward Snowden disclosing classified NSA secrets to the world? I think not.

June 9, 2013

How to decipher NSA data mining: Examine capabilities and intentions

The news media this week was full of articles describing the U.S. government's role in gathering, mining and analyzing big data from nine leading U.S. Internet companies in order to stop terrorism. Where is this capability going?

June 3, 2013

States' top cyber challenge remains spear phishing

Yes, spear phishing is hot all over the USA - very hot. In fact, this threat may be #1 on the list.

May 27, 2013

Cyberwear Privacy: How Will Google Glasses and Wearable Technology Transform Society?

For those who worry that individual privacy rights and personal freedoms are already being eroded by the Internet and new technology hold on to your virtual safety belts. Many experts are predicting almost everything will be recorded in public in the near future with wearable tech, whether you like it or not.

May 21, 2013

The Best Career Advice I Ever Received

For some reason, there seems to be an abundance of career advice floating around social media web pages right now. What are some of these good career tips, and what is the best career advice I ever received?

May 11, 2013

Hackers and Mother's Day: Honoring Hacker-Moms

What do hackers and Mother's Day have in common? According to the wealth of cyberspace knowledge that is defined by Wikipedia, a hacker can mean many things...

May 4, 2013

OpUSA: A Promise of Cyber Events to Come?

What will actually happen in (or to) cyberspace on May 7, 2013? Is this the new normal in cyber threats?

April 27, 2013

Fake Tweet? Dealing with the AP Twitter feed hack

There has been a lot of discussion over the past week about Twitter and the power of social media following the breach of the Associated Press (AP) Twitter feed last Tuesday. Bottom line, each of us still needs to decide: Can I trust that tweet?

April 21, 2013

After Boston: Relief, Thanks, Questions and Early Lessons

After the unprecedented events of that took place in and around Boston last week, where are we now and where are we going?

April 16, 2013

BYOD for You: New Guidebook for Employees to Bring Your Own Device

I am excited to announce the release of my new eBook on the hot topic of mobile technology and specifically bringing your own device to work (BYOD).

April 7, 2013

What if George Washington's rules of decency were adapted for social media?

Recently, my family was discussing lesser known facts about our first President, George Washington. The intriguing conversation centered on George Washingtons 110 Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation. How can we apply these rules to online decency today?

March 31, 2013

Futurists: In-body computers and higher-stakes for security

What are futurists predicting regarding technology? And for security, what is coming down the road?

March 24, 2013

Why trashing security awareness training is a bad idea

There has been a lot of discussion over the past few months regarding an article entitled: Why you shouldn't train employees for security awareness. Here's my response.

March 17, 2013

New NIST Cybersecurity Framework: Your Input Needed

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) issued a press release recently announcing the development of a new framework to reduce cyber risk. What do they need right now? Your input.

March 9, 2013

The Top 100 Most Innovative Infrastructure Projects in the World

What are the top infrastructure projects in the world? Why were they chosen? What projects are hot in North America? How is cloud computing changing the way business in conducted?

March 3, 2013

Three Takeaways from the 2013 RSA Conference in San Francisco

The largest cybersecurity conference in the world was held this past week - RSA in San Francisco. The 2013 show was as big and, in reality, overwhelming as ever. He are a few takeaways.

February 24, 2013

Seven Actions for Governors on Cybersecurity: A Transcript from the NGA Winter Meeting 2013

Yesterday, I was given the opportunity to speak on a panel at the National Governors Association (NGA) Winter meeting in Washington. Here is a transcript of my opening remarks which offer seven actions for Governors to take on cybersecurity.

February 19, 2013

Reactions to the Presidents EO on cybersecurity are all over the map

What are bloggers and other commentators saying about the new EO on cybersecurity and PPD-21?

February 10, 2013

Report: Executive order on cybersecurity coming after State of the Union address

According to Bloomberg, President Obama plans to release an executive order on cybersecurity soon after the State of the Union address.

February 5, 2013

Social media notifications: Is it time to cut back?

Notifications sent from social media companies. Some people love them others want them to go away.

January 29, 2013

Global Internet Connection Speeds: America lags far behind leaders

If Internet connection speed was an Olympic event, America wouldn't even get a medal.

January 22, 2013

Work - Life Balance: Is It Time To Change The Name?

Is it time to change the way we think about work / life balance? I'm not sure, but I've become more open-minded on this issue. Allow me to explain.

January 14, 2013

EU report says cyber attacks target trust: From identities to infrastructure

The European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA), which is a part of the European Union (EU), recently issued a report that describes the current global cyber threat landscape - including infrastructure.

January 7, 2013

Do You Want People To Really Act On Security Messages? Listen First

Just when I thought I was turning the corner on Internet security awareness & cyber safety, along comes an eye-opening situation that hits so close to home that I am forced to rethink the road ahead - again.

December 30, 2012

A Summary of The Top 2013 Cybersecurity Predictions

Over the past week, Ive been surfing the Net looking for blogs and articles that both recap online security trends from the past year as well as offer new cybersecurity predictions for the coming year. Heres a summary of what Ive seen thats memorable so far.

December 23, 2012

After Newtown: Should Government Security Also Change?

As we head into the heart of the holiday season, our thoughts and prayers still turn towards the families and devastated communities following the horrible events in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, 2012.

December 16, 2012

Defining a National Doctrine on Cybersecurity

Do we need such a national doctrine on cybersecurity? If so, what needs to be included? How will the rest of the world view this doctrine? Can a cyberdoctrine help guide our actions?

December 9, 2012

Cooperative Purchasing: WSCA Joining Forces with NASPO Makes a Powerful Contract Team

Ever since the Western States Contracting Alliance (WSCA) was formed in the October 1993 by the state purchasing directors from fifteen states, governments have been saving millions of dollars through cooperative purchasing.

December 2, 2012

2012 Review: Most Significant Data Breaches

What were the top government data breaches in the USA in 2012 (so far)? It appears that this year will be remembered more for state and local breach headlines than for federal government breaches.

November 26, 2012

Is BYOD Really Cheaper?

More and more companies and governments are implementing technology policies that allow their staff to bring your own device to work (or BYOD). But is BYOD really cheaper for governments?

November 19, 2012

My Best Advice After Petraeus Emails

Everyone is talking about the General David Petraeus scandal. But what I find most intriguing are the articles, blogs and opinions analyzing what all of this means for the rest of us who use technology with a special emphasis on redoubling efforts to protect email privacy. So here is my best advice.

November 12, 2012

Introducing the Michigan Cyber Range

I'd like to introduce our new Michigan Cyber Range which was formally launched on Friday, November 9, 2012.

November 4, 2012

Security News Roundup: S.C. Breach, Possible Executive Order and Perhaps a Cyber Treaty

We currently have several important security stories and not much public attention.

October 31, 2012

Tropical Storm Sandy Slams Networks

The impact of Tropical Storm Sandy is being felt far and wide.

October 23, 2012

NASCIO and Deloitte Publish New 2012 Cybersecurity Survey for State Governments

Day 2 at the NASCIO annual meeting, and one hot topic is the new Cybersecurity survey results that were released this morning called

October 22, 2012

NASCIO Conference Day 1

Here are some of my highlights from the first day at the NASCIO Conference in San Diego

October 19, 2012

NASCIO Annual Conference 2012

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) is holding their annual conference in San Diego this year from October 21-24, 2012.

October 18, 2012

Will Patch Tuesday Ever End?

Patch Tuesday is just around the corner, and I feel an urge to rant.

October 14, 2012

Iranian hackers blamed for massive new cyberattacks

Senior officials in the U.S. government believe that Iranian hackers are responsible for a new wave of significant cyberattacks. What does this mean?

October 8, 2012

From Cyberbully To Responsible Cybercitizen To Online Ambassador For Good

What actions steps can we take to improve cyberethics at home and work?

September 29, 2012

Digging Deeper Into Cyberspace: What Are The Ethical Problems?

Albert Einstein once said, "If I had one hour to save the world, I would spend 55 minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution." So how can we even begin to define cyberspace and take baby steps towards enabling the good and disabling the bad?

September 23, 2012

Online Checkup: Why Cyberethics Matter More Than You Think

When we go to the dentist for our semi-annual checkup and teeth cleaning, we typically get asked a series of questions about recent patterns of personal behavior. Perhaps its time for instituting a regular cyber check-up?

September 16, 2012

Latest Trends From The Illinois Cyber Security Forum 2012

I had the opportunity to travel to Springfield, Illinois, during this past week to speak at the Illinois Cyber Security Forum. This blog offers some of the highlights, random thoughts and what I lessons learned during the trip.

September 9, 2012

Is a Presidential Executive Order Coming on Cybersecurity?

Over the past few days, numerous news sources reported that President Obama is strongly considering an executive order on cybersecurity. It appears cybersecurity is becoming more political.

September 4, 2012

Should governments target users with online ads?

I noticed ads showing up all over the place asking me to come back to their websites. Whether I was checking baseball scores at ESPN, doing a Google maps search for driving directions or researching a cybersecurity article at various tech websites, the computer browser was beckoning me to return and buy plane tickets, with targeted ads asking me questions. Will governments be next to use targeted ads online?

August 25, 2012

Personal Password Protection: How to Strengthen Your Security to Avoid Digital Disaster

One of the hot topics at the MS-ISAC Annual Meeting and GFIRST in Atlanta this week was the recent Wired article by Mat Honan entitled: 'How Apple and Amazon Security Flaws Led to My Epic Hacking.'

August 22, 2012

GFIRST Conference Atlanta 2012

As in previous years, the GFIRST conference in being held during the same week as the MS-ISAC Annual Meeting and the InfraGard annual meetings. This allows a diverse group of experts from around the country to attend multiple events during one trip.

August 20, 2012

MS-ISAC Annual Meeting 2012 in Atlanta

I'm at the Multi-State Information Sharing & Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) Annual Meeting in Atlanta, where the state and local government Chief Security Officers (CSOs), Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) and many of their top team members have gathered for three days.

August 18, 2012

Is That Wireless Network Legal?

Back in late June, I wrote about connectivity options while traveling during my vacation in Ocean City, Maryland. The blog was entitled: Vacation WiFi: What Networks Can We Trust? Now, thanks to some emails from an online friend who wishes to remain anonymous, I can offer Part 2 of this story.

August 12, 2012

Cybermania: How do you spell cyber... everything?

Have you noticed some new words showing up in magazines and newspapers around the country? Words like: cyberattack, cyberwar , cybercrime and cyber... whatever.

August 4, 2012

India Suffers Worst Power Outage in History: What Can We Learn?

Suddenly, without warning, no power. The blackout spreads. The grid goes down. What can we learn from this?

July 28, 2012

Could The Olympics Bring Down Your Network? Here's Some Advice

The 2012 Summer Olympic Games are here, and the five to eight hour time difference between the mainland USA and the UK may be just the right combination to bust your work network(s).

July 22, 2012

Game On: The London Olympic Security Teams Can Still Go for the Silver (Lining)

For security pros preparing for this massive undertaking, the unflattering headlines pretty much summed up ongoing security problems. But while gold may be out of reach, the security teams can still go for the silver lining.

July 14, 2012

Putting a Defensible Deletion Strategy in Place: An Interview with Jim McGann

e-Discovery, information management and the legal aspects associated with enterprise data are hot topics for technology leaders to address with their business customers. But what information governance strategies are legally defensible? What compliance approaches work best in the long run? How can enterprises reduce risk when they save or delete data?

July 7, 2012

What Can We Learn from Malware Monday?

Over the past few weeks, global news outlets have been warning users about Malware Monday and the pending Internet shutdown on July 9, 2012, for computers still infected with the DNSChanger malware. While the issue is certainly real, this blogger believes many headlines were (and still are) too alarmist. Can we learn anything from this?

June 30, 2012

Vacation WiFi: What Networks Can We Trust?

I was recently on vacation with my family in Ocean City, Maryland. As I powered up my iPad from our fifth floor condo on 136th Street, more than a half dozen wireless networks popped up. I asked myself: Can I use (or trust) any of these? Are they free? Is it worth the risk, if they are?

June 16, 2012

Favorite Survival Tips for Using Social Media

What's appropriate and what's not regarding the use of social networks? Beyond formal codes of conduct at work, what behaviors and attitudes will likely lead to trouble? What tips can we share from those who have gone before us and learned about the good, the bad and the ugly? What good habits enable a positive experience in the long run? And, what are some examples of social media technology being used in destructive ways that undermine relationships?

June 10, 2012

Advice Following LinkedIn Hack: Change, Don't Reuse, Your Passwords

Computer experts from around the world are warning users to change passwords immediately following the announcements that millions of passwords from LinkedIn, eHarmony and Lastfm were posted on hacker websites.

June 4, 2012

Front Page Cyber: Stuxnet and Flame have Changed the Discourse

A new era began this weekend in cyberspace. Starting with the New York Times article dated June 1, 2012, which proclaimed: Obama Order Sped Up Wave of CyberAttacks Against Iran, the global discourse regarding cyber attacks has now shifted.

May 28, 2012

How Do Social Networks Get Hacked? A Lulzsec Case Study

How do social networking sites get attacked by hackers? What methods are used? Why are attacks successful? What can be done to improve security on social networks?

May 20, 2012

Reinventing (or Removing) Cash Registers with new Shopping Security

Ever since I read Megatrends in 1988, Ive been fascinated by predictions about how technology will alter our daily lives in the near-future. One area that is evolving quickly is our shopping experiences both online and offline.

May 12, 2012

How Multitasking Hurts Our Productivity

Most of us always trying to do multiple activities at the same time. But is it really working?

May 6, 2012

Listening to the Noobs on Security - Or Not?

How much attention should cyber pros pay to comments from the "noobs" about technology and security?

April 28, 2012

Poll: What's Happening With BYOD in Government?

Opinions are all over the map on "Bring Your Own Device" (BYOD) to work. Here are some viewpoints and a poll.

April 22, 2012

Dark Clouds Over Technology: Pondering Action After Recent State Government Data Breaches

Over the past few weeks, there have been several high-profile breaches announced involving state government systems - one in South Carolina and one in Utah. My first reaction was to think: There but for the grace of God go we.

April 15, 2012

The Business of Security: Why Customer Service Matters More Than You Think - Part 3

So what is the right level of security? How do you know if you have gone too far, or not far enough in protecting critical systems? Do all business functions need the same level of security?

April 14, 2012

Titanic Mistakes: Five Pragmatic Lessons from Spectacular Technology Failures

Everyone is talking about the sinking of the Titanic and they should be. Here are five lessons for technology and security professionals from the sinking of the Titanic ...

April 9, 2012

Delivering Cybersecurity With Customer Focus: Who, When, Where and How

So how can this customer service theme work for security professionals? Allow me to tell you a true story.

April 2, 2012

Customer Service is a Priority for Security Pros Too

Several hundred people had gathered for a second morning to hear the results and ask questions regarding the recently completed Gartner study, which covered all aspects of Michigan Governments Information, Communications and Technology (ICT).

March 28, 2012

Is America Outgunned in Cyber?

Shaun Henry, the FBIs top cyber cop and executive assistant director responsible for cyber, told the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) that we're not winning and that the current approaches being used by the public and private sectors are: "Unsustainable. Computer criminals are simply too good and defensive measures too weak to stop them."

March 22, 2012

Lawsuits Challenge Privacy Policies

Internet privacy has long been a hot-button issue. Central questions are being asked about who owns what data, how that data can be used by various companies to target individuals in marketing and whether users can opt-in or opt-out of various data-sharing approaches. Just as in other areas of life in America in 2012, these questions are often end up being settled in the courts.

March 18, 2012

Perspectives on IT Security in Eastern Europe: First Impressions from Two Very Different Cities

I traveled to Eastern Europe last week to speak at two different one day cybersecurity conferences that are a part of a series of events known as the IDC IT Security Roadshow 2012.

March 8, 2012

Will New Cybersecurity Legislation Pass in 2012?

Will new cybersecurity legislation pass in 2012? If yes, what will be included, what will be left out and which agencies or organizations will be in charge of various information sharing and monitoring roles? These are hot questions in DC right now.

March 4, 2012

Hacker Hangouts: Where the Young and Restless Go to Learn How to Hack

But where do hackers live and spend their time? Beyond Black Hat Conferences around the world, where do hackers congregate online? As security pros scan the world-wide-web for the good, the bad and the ugly, we come across information, tools and methods that the majority of people dont know exist.

February 26, 2012

When Do Social Networks Become a Burden?

How many online social networks have you joined? I'm starting to wonder if there are too many social media sites that I participate in. Is a backlash coming?

February 18, 2012

Defining Cyber FUD: The Bad, The Good and The Ugly

FUD is a complicated topic. FUD can be your friend or your worst enemy. It can light a fire under cyber initiatives, or end a career. It can influence decisions in the middle of a crisis. Regardless of the story, FUD is important to master and thats not just hype.

February 7, 2012

Cyber Training: Are All the Best Technology & Security Conferences Out of State?

It's that time of year when my email in-box starts filling up with invitations to events surrounding the RSA conference in San Francisco. Nevertheless, some of my best experiences have been at security and technology conferences near home.

January 30, 2012

DMARC Should Reduce Phishing Scams

Major technology vendors announced the formation of the Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) system today. This new email authentication framework should reduce the number of phishing scams that try to trick users into thinking emails are from someone else.

January 25, 2012

Anti-Piracy Legislation Protests Continue: FTC Cyber Awareness Site Down

The Federal Trade Commissions website at www.onguardonline.gov remained down for a second day after it had suffered a security breach.

January 20, 2012

DOJ Shuts Down Megaupload, Anonymous Retaliates

This is turning into a wild week for headline-grabbing cyber activity. Immediately following Internet protests of proposed new legislation to crack down on Internet piracy, the Department of Justice (DOJ) moved quickly to shut down one of the most popular websites known for illegal downloads called Magaupload.

January 17, 2012

Wikipedia Protest: Websites Plan Jan 18 Shutdown Over SOPA

On January 18, 2012, Wikipedia and a long list of other popular websites will go dark to protest the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).

January 12, 2012

Shnakule Malware Network Reshapes Views on Cyber Crime

A highly sophisticated malware network called "Shnakule" has recently been singled out as increasingly dangerous. Many security firms are rapidly reacting and even changing their views on cyber crime operations as a result of new information.

January 4, 2012

2012 Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in Government

Its that time of year when we ask: where are we heading in regards to cybersecurity in 2012? Also, where have we been?

December 28, 2011

Holiday Week Security Fun: From Top T-shirts to Tech Humor

But one of my children said, "Why don't you write something fun for all those people who have to work between now and New Years Eve. How about some computer jokes, funny security stories or a list of your top 5 or 10 geek/nerd or security T-shirts?"

December 18, 2011

What is the Promoting and Enhancing Cybersecurity and Information Sharing Effectiveness (PrECISE) Act?

A new cybersecurity bill was introduced by members of the House Homeland Security Committee on Thursday, December 15, 2011. Named the Promoting and Enhancing Cybersecurity and Information Sharing Effectiveness Act (PrECISE Act), the proposal would establish a federal overseer as a quasi-government agency which would coordinate information sharing between the private and public sector.

December 7, 2011

Career Advice: Professionals Can Learn About Success, Humility and Endurance from Tim Tebow

Despite his weaknesses, Tebow is winning over the hearts and minds in America. We love our underdogs, because most of us have our failings and weaknesses too. Our lives are full of the critics,... We just dont see our mistakes paraded around as publically or as often as Tim Tebow.

December 1, 2011

Mobile Phone Firestorm: Carrier IQ Software Causing Privacy Concerns

Privacy concerns are growing regarding the use of Carrier IQ software in many mobile phones.

November 27, 2011

Cyber Monday: Are You Shopping From Work?

Its that time of year again. Cyber Monday has arrived, and recent survey results say that 50% of Americans do some holiday shopping from work.

November 23, 2011

New Report: Illinois Water System Was Not Hacked

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that the Illinois water system in Springfield was not hacked.

November 21, 2011

Hacking Illinois Water: Seven Questions and Six Answers

The top technology story at the end of last week involved multiple news sources reporting a cyber attack that penetrated a US public water system in Illinois. Heres what we know, and what we dont.

November 13, 2011

Hacker Group Spends Years Developing Sophisticated Duqu Trojan

The Duqu Trojan, which is also known as son of Stuxnet, was discovered just two months ago and is getting headlines for the sense of humor that its creators have revealed in the code. According to Kaspersky Lab, the hacker group behind the Duqu Trojan may have been working on the code for more than four years.

November 6, 2011

Cyber Crime: Hackers Are Hacking Each Other Too

New reports sound like they could be promoting a popular television drama series on mobsters - with a new technology twist. Something like: The Sopranos go cyber.

October 30, 2011

New Core Services Taxonomy for State IT Security Programs

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIOs) Security and Privacy Committee has released a new report entitled: The Heart of the Matter: A Core Services Taxonomy for State IT Security Programs.

October 22, 2011

Weatherford an Excellent Choice for DHS Deputy Undersecretary for Cybersecurity

Mark Weatherford has been named as the new deputy undersecretary for cybersecurity at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Mark is a thoughtful executive who has both military service and hands-on experience dealing with every aspect of our cyber ecosystem. I am confident that he is the right person for this job as we head into 2012.

October 19, 2011

What Should Get Cut Out of Technology Budgets?

There have been several recent articles and reports that offer ways to save Information Technology (IT) dollars. The lists of potential cuts are worth reviewing, but I urge some caution as well.

October 8, 2011

A New Call to Action - Backstage at the Michigan Cyber Summit

Governor Snyder quickly raised the bar: "If people walk away tomorrow saying that we had a nice conference with good speakers, we will have failed. We need everyone walking away saying that it is time to act now on cyber whatever their role."

September 24, 2011

Career Moves: All Roads Lead to Security

As reported by Government Technology Magazine last week, Michigan is merging physical and cyber security. I will be moving to the newly created role of Michigan Chief Security Officer (CSO) in October. The reaction from my friends and colleagues from around the country has been all over the map ranging from Great move to Are you really ok with this?

September 10, 2011

The Day That Changed the Decade: Remembering September 11, 2001

I had just come out of an e-Michigan meeting in the Romney Building in downtown Lansing. It was a few minutes after 9 AM on 9/11/01. Someone yelled, A small plane just hit the World Trade Center in New York!

September 5, 2011

Why Computer Geeks Need Sports

Where did you first learn what it means to out-hustle the competition? How did you develop that strong will to win? When was the first time you worked hard with teammates to accomplish a goal? For many readers, the answer is likely to be playing sports.

August 27, 2011

Hurricane Irene: Using Technology to Prepare and Clean Up

Hurricanes are notorious for disabling technology by cutting off electricity. In some cases, the threat of coming storms can overwhelm our phone systems and websites. But technology is also being used in new ways to prepare for and clean up after natural disasters, like hurricane Irene.

August 15, 2011

Consolidating Data Centers: The New Normal in Government

Governments across North America are now consolidating data centers at an unprecedented pace. This is not just talk, but real action is (finally) occurring.

August 9, 2011

MS-ISAC Annual Meeting Focus 2011: Strengthening Partnerships

The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) is holding its annual meeting in Nashville, TN, this week, and the focus is all about ways to strengthen partnerships.

July 31, 2011

Anonymous Hackers Continue Assault: ManTech A New Victim

The string of major cyber hacking attacks continued this week, with ManTech International reportedly being the latest company hit. What's to be done?

July 16, 2011

Can Crowdsourcing Predict the Future? Forecasting Ace Will Test if Perception is Reality

Going Back to the Future may no longer be just for the movies. The intelligence community has launched a new project which attempts to predict what will happen next by using crowdsourcing techniques.

July 3, 2011

ICT Infrastructure: Where Can You Find Innovative Ideas That Work?

Where do you get your blog and/or article ideas? I'm often asked that question. Or colleagues want to know: What are the top ten websites you turn to in order to gauge innovative technology trends?

June 12, 2011

What is a healthy cyber ecosystem?

Sometimes we come across a new word or phrase that is not only different, but intriguing. Which brings me to the topic of today's blog: What is a healthy cyber ecosystem?

May 29, 2011

Funniest Spam: The Joke is On Them

Recently I decided, if you cant beat the spammers, I might as well just relax on Memorial Day Weekend and enjoy a good laugh on them.

May 21, 2011

We're Up, Tired, But Smiling Again

This has been a rough week for our technology operations. The good news is that our critical Secretary of State systems are up and offices are open and helping customers.

May 14, 2011

Digital Wallets: The Next Big Thing?

I was recently asked: What is the next big thing in technology?

April 23, 2011

Amazon Instability Shakes the Cloud: What's Next?

Youre never as good as you look when you're winning, and never as bad as you look when you're losing. I think that adage applies beyond sports to many aspects of life and business including the management of computer operations connected to the global Internet in 2011.

April 11, 2011

How Much Social Networking is Right for Government?

How important is social networking to leading companies right now? Very important. In some cases, it may even be the most important priority. Its time for state and local government agencies to reexamine these social networking trends and build new strategies to engage partners with social media.

March 27, 2011

Why FedRAMP Matters to a Government Cloud Near You

What is FedRAMP? How does it help with cloud-computing environments? Can we use it here in our state? I expect these questions will be asked across America over the next few years in the halls of state and local governments.

March 20, 2011

Browser Battle Stays Hot: Microsoft IE9 is Latest Entry

Microsoft released the new Internet Explorer (IE) 9 this past week, and government enterprises across the world now have another important decision to make.

March 12, 2011

Helping Japan Recover - Governments Join Emergency Effort

As Japan strives to recovers from the devastating earthquake and tsunamis, global governments are sending aid in a variety of forms.

February 26, 2011

Cyber-Security Action on National Governors Association (NGA) Meeting Agenda

As state leaders gather in Washington, D.C., this weekend for the 2011 National Governors Association (NGA) Winter Meeting, one topic on the agenda is cyber-security. Experts in the field will be addressing questions like: What threats in cyber-space do we now face? What are the potential ramifications of these cyber-threats? What steps can governments take now?

February 12, 2011

President Obama Promotes Broadband: Northern Michigan WiMax Solution Showcased

Egyptian democracy and high-speed Internet are not topics that typically go together, but they were both highlighted during President Obama’s speech this week in Marquette, Michigan.

January 31, 2011

Progress on Wiring Rural America for High Speed Internet

A quiet, but dramatic, change is well under way in rural America. Over the next two years, Broadband Internet access will become available to many parts of the United States that have been struggling with only dial-up connectivity up until now

January 15, 2011

WikiLeaks Lessons for State and Local Government

“What do think about that WikiLeaks situation?” I’ve been getting that question a lot lately - not only from the typical techies or security pros, but from just about everyone else.

December 29, 2010

Government IT Trends to Watch in 2011

It’s that time of year when everyone seems to be recapping 2010 and making technology predictions for 2011. Here are my favorite predictions and some important trends to watch regarding government technology infrastructures for 2011.

December 19, 2010

Cloud First Policy -- What Does It Really Mean?

The Federal Government has issued a cloud first policy as a part of the Office of Management and Budget s 25-point plan to reform federal information technology management. What does it mean for state and local governments?

December 4, 2010

Innovative RFPs: Back to the Requirements

It s not in the contract. We hear these words every day in government. The challenge is huge: To be innovative in our RFPs or Invitations to Bid (ITBs) and still be efficient.

November 21, 2010

Will States Adopt Federal IT Management Changes?

The US Office of Management & Budget (OMB) will be implementing fundamental changes that “entail structural changes in how programs are funded, staffed and managed.” The plans call for a “cloud-first” policy which boosts the use of government cloud computing for new systems.

November 5, 2010

Transitioning to 2011 Priorities

There are many ramifications from the state and local government election results this week, such as this article which highlights new Governors to bring big turnover of State CIOs. So what should current (or prospective) government technology professionals be doing now to prepare for 2011?

October 23, 2010

Learning from Mistakes and Being Off Balance on Purpose

Our Michigan Digital Summit was held this past week, and the opening keynote was truly different in a fun way.

October 9, 2010

Mobile Device Management - More Smartphones Mean More Questions for CxOs

What is clear is that the battle for mobile apps is heating up, and the mobile OS space has moved up to become a core issue for CxOs over the next few years.

September 30, 2010

NASCIO Conference Day 3

Day three at the NASCIO conference began with a keynote session led by Thornton May, who is an IT Futurist, Executive Director and Dean at the IT leadership Academy and Author of The New Know: Innovation Powered by Analytics.

September 28, 2010

NASCIO Annual Conference Day 1

The opening keynote by best-selling author Don Yaeger was inspiring and funny.

September 19, 2010

Internet Explorer 9 Beta Is Here --Time to Start Testing?

Microsoft released the new Internet Explorer 9 (IE 9) beta web browser this past week, and the initial reviews from technology critics and even competitors like Google are positive.

September 6, 2010

Virginia: We're With You

There have been quite a few headlines lately about the current challenges facing Virginia's government technology infrastructure . From this IEEE Spectrum article, to Computerworld in ...

August 24, 2010

Intel is Buying McAfee: What's Next?

Everyone's talking about Intel's pending acquisition of McAfee for $7.7 billion. The list of questions is long. Did they pay too much - or too little? ...

August 15, 2010

New Cloud Computing Offerings for Government: Yes, They Are Game-Changers

  Are recent announcements of product offerings from Google, Microsoft and others going to fundamentally change government technology service delivery?  Has the long ...

July 30, 2010

Should Governments Join Banks in Seeking Customers' Help Online?

"We need your help to stop online thieves."  This surprising message from many banks to their customer base is becoming more popular as online ...

July 18, 2010

Too Much eMail? New Survey Results Say Yes

  How much email is too much? New survey results from Harris Interactive found that 50 emails a day may be the breaking point for employees. ...

July 5, 2010

Social networks can redefine "guilty by association"

Earlier this week I received an email from an out of state friend and respected colleague who I haven't heard from in a while. He ...

June 21, 2010

Personal Privacy at Work: Supreme Court Reinforces Status Quo

In a unanimous decision last week, the US Supreme Court rejected the privacy claims of an employee who was texting using employer-provided equipment.  According ...

June 13, 2010

New Mobile Opportunities with Key Fobs

Imagine this:  " A motorist still at the office can use a cell phone to remotely start his car or truck, adjust the temperature, confirm ...

June 1, 2010

vGov - A New Virtual World for Government

 Move over Second Life , a new virtual world is being created for the federal government called vGov. According to Government Computer News: "The ...

May 17, 2010

Free Cloud Storage through the Back Door?

Try typing "free storage" into a Google search, and you'll get almost 47 million results. Here are a few highlights: Mozy.com offers: "2GB, Absolutely Free ...

May 8, 2010

NASCIO Midyear Conference Recap

The National Association of State CIOs (NASCIO) Midyear Conference for 2010 was held during the last week of April in Baltimore.  The attendance was the ...

April 24, 2010

Enforcing Enterprise Standards: Who, What, When, Where and How?

Since posting a blog on the Apple iPad's effect on government standards a few weeks back, I've received several questions from around the country regarding ...

April 12, 2010

Tough Press Lately for Cloud Computing

There's been some tough press lately for cloud computing. Recent conferences on the topic have turned more negative as very high expectations are slow to ...

April 4, 2010

iPad versus Enterprise Standards: Who Wins?

iPad fever is here! On a weekend that celebrates Easter, the NCAA Final Four and record warm temperatures over half the country, everyone seems to ...

April 2, 2010

Redefining Enemies: 21st Century Crime Knows No Borders

I was jogging on my treadmill when I saw the breaking news on ABC - Moscow subway bombing just occurred. It was Monday morning, March 29, ...

March 24, 2010

Headlines from Google to Cybercrime take Center Stage

 In my twenty-five years as a security and technology professional, I have never seen so many hot headlines around technology issues. Whether you are ...

March 13, 2010

What's Next for Privacy?

 I read a very interesting CNET article yesterday entitled, "Why no one cares about privacy anymore." I urge you to take five ...

March 1, 2010

Action Required: End Coming for Windows 2000

Microsoft is warning that the extended support phase is ending for Windows 2000 (server and client), on July 13, 2010 .  In addition, other products with lapsing service ...

February 21, 2010

Pa School Laptops: Reasonable Security or a Privacy Violation?

Many schools around the nation issue student laptops. But what activities are allowed with those laptops by students or family members? What policies apply? What ...

February 15, 2010

A New Buzz in the Air

 What's all the Buzz about? No, I'm not referring to the Olympics, an uptick in the economy or even springtime bees. Google ...

February 2, 2010

Vancouver Olympics: New Technology, Security & Infrastructure

 This is not your grandfather's winter games. Every Olympic city makes major investments in technology, security and infrastructure in the 21st Century, and ...

January 25, 2010

Oracle, Sun and You

Now that Oracle's acquisition of Sun has been approved by the European Commission , what's next? That is, what does this merger mean for government technology ...

January 17, 2010

Google - China Situation Has State & Local Implications

The world-wide media was full of stories this week regarding the Google situation in China. Articles ranged from the Global Implications of Google's ...

January 11, 2010

National Broadband Plan Delayed But Coming Soon

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski has asked congressional leaders for more time to deliver the much anticipated National Broadband Plan, ...

January 4, 2010

Watch Out - the Vooks are Coming!

What's around the corner for 2010? What new invention will be the next iPhone, iPod or blackberry? Are there any hot ...

December 28, 2009

Remembering the First Decade

 As we approach a new decade in 2010, my mind instinctively goes back in time and scans the past decade.  My thoughts easily jump ...

December 21, 2009

Effectively Deploying Wireless LANs

Wireless Local Area Networks (LANs) have been around for years, but how can state and local governments manage wireless networks efficiently and effectively from an ...

December 13, 2009

Learning from Funny Conference Calls

A funny thing happened on my way to work yesterday. Actually, the situation was pretty frustrating, and there were a few lessons learned ...

December 5, 2009

Are Deeper Budget Cuts Coming?

 Are deeper budget cuts coming for struggling state and local governments? After a year filled with tough news regarding furlough days and more belt ...

November 30, 2009

Web Sites Struggle on Black Friday: Cyber Monday is Next

 Technology directors around the nation were watching the weekend news very closely for events regarding online sales on Black Friday (the ...

November 25, 2009

Giving Thanks At Work

How do you give thanks at work?   One USA Today headline this morning read, "The spirit of the season: Be thankful, spend less."   ...

November 20, 2009

My Take on NASCIO's Top 2010 Priorities

The National Association of State CIOs (NASCIO) has again polled state CIOs to determine what's hot and what's not as we head into&...

November 13, 2009

New Cyber Security Technology Alliance Points the Way

Lockheed Martin and thirteen other leading technology providers announced the formation of a new cyber security technology alliance yesterday. The announcement took place ...

November 1, 2009

NASCIO Best Practice Submissions Worth Reading

 The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) released their list of best practices at their annual conference in Austin, Texas last week. ...

October 27, 2009

Citizen Satisfaction with Federal Websites Surges

The University of Michigan released a report today rating and ranking 104 federal government websites in terms of how well the satisfy citizens. The report is ...

October 26, 2009

Should Governments Move to Windows 7, Linux or Wait?

 What's the best strategy regarding upgrades to your desktop and netbook operating systems? Should governments move to Windows 7, Linux or wait for Google's ...

October 19, 2009

Three Tools for Success: From Ironman Triathlon to Technology

 This past week we held the annual Michigan Digital Government Summit in Lansing. Our opening keynote was presented by Mark Allen, six ...

October 4, 2009

Are Google Outages Becoming a Serious Problem?

 It was Saturday morning, October 3, 2009, and I was trying to log into my gmail (Google mail) account about 7:45 AM (EST). After typing in ...

September 28, 2009

Don't Neglect Identity in Your Government Cloud

 Got any calls lately from vendors who want to share their new cloud computing strategy? I certainly have - and from some unlikely sources. ...

September 22, 2009

Out of Africa: Government Technology is a Global Theme

 I just returned from a nine day trip to South Africa where I was one of the keynote speakers during&...

September 7, 2009

Data Storage Market Decline Brings Opportunities

    EMC continues to lead IBM, Dell and HP in the external disk storage systems market, but worldwide revenue declined by 18.7% from the ...

August 30, 2009

Kundra Addresses Architecture, Procurement and Partnerships

 In a recent interview with Government Computer News (GCN), Federal CIO Vivek Kundra revealed some very interesting perspectives regarding the need to upgrade technology ...

August 24, 2009

New NGA Guidance for Electronic Health Information Exchange (HIE)

 The State Alliance for e-Health, which is sponsored by the National Governor's Association (NGA), has released new guidance which urges states to start planning ...

August 17, 2009

Time to Disconnect? eMail and Vacation

Do you ever struggle with balancing work and family time? I certainly do. Turning off a Blackberry can be hard - even on vacation. No ...

August 3, 2009

Social Networking: Should We Ban or Expand at Work?

  Every few weeks I visit a few of the federal government technology websites like Government Computer News or Federal Computer Week to see ...

July 27, 2009

Marketing Hype: Dealing with Email, Phone and Other Advertising Tricks

  A few times a year I feel the need to rant. This blog entry is one of those times, and the topic is dealing ...

July 20, 2009

Move Over Real ID: Here Comes PASS ID

  After a revolt over cost, timelines and a host of other difficult issues, the original "Real ID" appears dead. Secretary Napolitano testified ...

July 11, 2009

Hard Savings Now

  As our national and local economies continue to struggle, managing a technology budget is getting increasingly difficult. There are many unknowns as we ...

July 3, 2009

Stimulus Will Test Governments and Governance

The race has begun. Across America, state and local governments, private sector infrastructure providers, libraries, universities, non-profit groups, school districts and more are all ...

June 26, 2009

Is It Morning Or Evening For Cloud Computing?

 Over the past few weeks, I've dedicated significant time and energy to learning more about the latest trends in cloud ...

June 19, 2009

Technology Training in Tough Times: New Ideas to Help

  A few months ago we held a one day management offsite which included some inspiring words from the top, a great (but ...

June 14, 2009

Broadband Collaboration: Don't Forget the Libraries

I was sitting in the back of the auditorium inside the Michigan State University's Kellogg Center in East Lansing. The event was the Michigan ...

June 7, 2009

Critical Infrastructure Protection: Are We at a Cyber Crossroads?

Are we truly at a significant crossroads in the protection of our Nation's critical infrastructure? More specifically, will the cross-sector cyber infrastructure ...

May 24, 2009

Honolulu's Internet Vote Worked: The Wave of the Future?

The nation's first all-digital election was deemed a success by Honolulu's city officials over the weekend. According to the Associated Press: "Some 115,000 voters in Honolulu's ...

May 17, 2009

How Insourcing Jobs Can Save Dollars

There have been quite a few articles about insourcing over the past few months. As expected, this buzz has sparked another debate about ...

May 6, 2009

Flu Response: The Capacity Dilemma

To buy or not to buy (more telework capacity) - that is the question during an epidemic. As the H1N1 flu situation evolved rapidly ...

April 26, 2009

Government CTO Summit: Data Center Trends Emerge

Government Technology Magazine hosted an invitation only CTO Summit for government CIOs and CTOs on April 14-15.  This year's focus was "Data ...

April 18, 2009

The Wide World of IT Infrastructure

Growing up, I used to love to watch ABCs Wide World of Sports. I'll never forget that famous line from Jim McKay: "Travelling the world ...