HHS CIO and NIH CISO Stress Integration, Modernization for Zero Trust

“When implementing a successful zero trust architecture, Federal chief information officers (CIOs) and chief information security officers (CISOs) encourage agencies to look towards modernization and to think of zero trust as an ‘integration architecture.’

Steven Hernandez, CISO and director of information assurance services at the Department of Education, said looking to modernization is one of the key reasons he believes the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) recently awarded his agency $20 million to create and implement a zero trust architecture (ZTA) plan…”

“Gerald J. Caron, CIO and assistant inspector general for information technology at the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, agreed with Hernandez that zero trust architectures can modernize an agency, but also reminded the audience that zero trust requires a large integration effort…”

“‘When we start talking about tools for managing this, we can very easily fall into the shiny object syndrome and get distracted by all that,’ [Amber Simco, deputy CISO at the National Institutes of Health (NIH)] said. ‘And we also can end up investing a lot of hope in that once we get this one tool that everything is going to be okay. And it’s really a false sense of reassurance that some of these tools can give us. And so there has to be a lot of attention and time paid into making sure we are getting what we need.’…”

“[Hernandez said] ‘One of the beautiful parts about zero trust is if we do it right, there’s less burden on the actual user, and that sounds odd given some of the comments we’ve made about… “wow the user is going to be really busy reauthenticating all the time,” and the answer is no. No, they’re not. And that’s part of the beauty is that all that gets automated.’…” Read the full article here.

Source: Fed CIOs Stress Integration, Modernization for Zero Trust – By Grace Dille, October 13, 2021. MeriTalk.



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