Virginia Security/Spheres of Influence/Illustration by Tom McKeith Virginia Security/Spheres of Influence Illustration by Tom McKeith

Yet the toolkit will be mercurial regardless. "We're looking to develop it a lot more, and it will be dynamic," Albritton said.

And because developing robust security takes time and stamina, officials involved in the interlocking spheres project say it will need to evolve dynamically, too.

"Security is really a continuous life cycle," Slaight said. "It's never complete. The threat is always evolving. There are always new tools coming out -- new exploits, new vulnerabilities -- and it takes constantly staying up to date and on top of the threat, and adjusting the defensive posture of the infrastructure."

Willinger feels much better about Virginia's security now that the spheres are in place. "We're a lot better off now than we were three years ago, most definitely," he said. "When you feel a little more confident in your poker hand, you feel better off about what you have."


Hilton Collins, Staff Writer Hilton Collins  |  GT Staff Writer

By day, Hilton Collins is a staff writer for Government Technology and Emergency Management magazines who covers sustainability, cybersecurity and disaster management issues. By night, he’s a sci-fi/fantasy fanatic, and if he had to choose between comic books, movies, TV shows and novels, he’d have a brain aneurysm. He can be reached at and on @hiltoncollins on Twitter.