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Alion Awarded $8.5 Million Air Force Contract

April 24, 2009
By Katie Packard

Alion Science and Technology has been awarded an $8.5 million U.S. Air Force follow-on contract to design and maintain a Web-based system that reports, assesses and predicts Air Force readiness levels. Under the contract, Alion will continue creating the Predictive Readiness Assessment System for the Air Force Readiness Office.

Webinar: Securing the Data Center

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

Next in SIGNAL's webinar series, "Securing the Data Center: A DOD Architecture for Information Assurance" will take place on May 7, 2009 at 11:00 AM ET. Targeted attacks by hackers and insiders are aimed where they'll do the most damage and where the most valuable assets are located - the agency data center. Government agencies can increase protection and reduce operational costs when security issues are considered at the very beginning of data center planning. So it's ironic that data center security is often an afterthought. A well thought-out defense-in-depth strategy includes multiple layers of security and different overlapping technologies.

Attendees will learn how a secure data center architecture can:

  • Enable secure rollout of Web 2.0 and SOA services
  • Achieve Policy and Regulatory Compliance
  • Protect Data and Communication Integrity & Privacy
  • Enable Secure Email and Web Transactions
  • Prevent Data Leakage and Disclosure
  • Provide Comprehensive Threat Control

Panelists include:

  • Rich Campbell, Senior Systems Engineer, Cisco Data Center Solutions
  • Andrew Benhase, Consulting Systems Engineer, Cisco Security Solutions
  • Michael Jones, Federal Security Services Manager, Cisco Federal Services

For additional details, including how to register, click here.

Web 2.0 Usage Saves Money, Increases Efficiency

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - Michael Byrne, former member of the New York City Fire Department, started out the discussion about how technology can save money with a bold statement: "Web 2.0 is biggest shift in how we communicate since the introduction of the telegraph." At an afternoon break-out session at the National Conference on Emergency Communications, he backed up this statement by explaining that social networking capabilities have replaced traditional one-way communications with dialogue. "It's a dialogue that's taking place that makes it faster to get input from the constituents then ever before," he stated.

FEMA Director Urges States to Apply for Grants

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - National Conference on Emergency Communications attendees interested in grants to fund local programs heard about recent changes to the program during a Thursday session titled "Show Me the Money: Understanding the Grants Process." The Honorable W. Ross Ashley III, FEMA Grant Programs Directorate, DHS, pointed out that partnership is not only the key theme for this conference but also for his directorate.

State-Level Experience Valuable Asset for Members of New Administration

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - Juliette Kayyem, assistant secretary for intergovernmental programs, DHS, led off Thursday afternoon's interactions at the National Conference on Emergency Communications. Kayyem came to the federal government from her position with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts where she was the governor's go-to person for homeland security.

Industry, Government Partnerships Key to Disaster Response

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - Day two of the National Conference on Emergency Communications demonstrated that, as hoped, networking is the norm for this event. The chatter from first responder organization representatives from throughout the United States before the morning break-out sessions was nearly deafening.

Boatsie's Boxes

April 23, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

Boatsie's Boxes started out sending packages to the base hospital in Balad, Iraq, and now gives goodies to several military hospitals as well as young troops deployed for the first time. In addition, through help from service members, items now are reaching the front lines of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Emergency Communications Experts Discuss Unplanned, Planned Response Events

April 22, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - Two case studies were the topic of discussion during the final presentation of the first day of the National Conference on Emergency Communications. The discussions centered around two large-scale multijurisdictional responses: one unplanned and one planned.

Open Discussion Leads to Details and Answers

April 22, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - Both federal and local emergency response leaders opened the first formal session of the National Conference on Emergency Communications by inviting attendees to share openly success stories as well as the challenges they face. More than 450 representatives from emergency response organizations are attending the conference, including personnel from the military as well as large and small U.S. communities and Guam, Hawaii, the United Kingdom and Canada.

First National Conference on Emergency Communications Opens in Chicago

April 22, 2009
By Henry Kenyon

CHICAGO - The first National Conference on Emergency Communications opened today with the goal of creating a national forum for emergency responders. In addition, the conference has been designed to clarify roles and initiatives the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Emergency Communications (OEC) and its partner programs are leading.

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