In Depth Show Blog – March 26

This is the In Depth show blog. Here you can listen to our interviews, find more information about the guests on the show each day, as well as links to other stories and resources we discuss.

Today’s guests:


Clarence Crawford
Deloitte Consulting

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A giant mess is what the Office of Management and Budget calls the federal government’s attempt to modernize its financial systems. Moving forward, agencies will have to use a federal shared-services provider when updating their financial management systems, according to a new memo from OMB Controller Danny Werfel. Clarence Crawford, director at Deloitte Consulting and a former chief financial officer at several federal agencies, spoke with Francis about what the mandate will mean for federal agencies.

Julie Peeler
ISC2 Foundation

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Phishing scams and malware attacks only need one victim to get inside your agency. And sometimes your workforce may let its guard down because it doesn’t really understand the consequences. Julie Peeler, director of the ISC2 Foundation, spoke with Francis about why it’s important for agencies to discuss cybersecurity with employees. (For more cybersecurity news, visit our Cybersecurity Page.)

RELATED STORY: Straight talk on security gets employees to listen — and comply

Kathy Windsor
Component Program Manager
Government Travel Charge Card Program, Defense Logistics Agency

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Effective buying for small purchases is easier at most federal agencies because of purchase card programs. The Defense Logistics Agency is getting some pretty heavy recognition for its good work from a company that knows a little bit about charge cards — CitiGroup. Kathy Windsor is DLA’s component program manager for the Government Travel Charge Card Program. She joined Francis to discuss the success of the program.(This story is part of Federal News Radio’s daily DoD Update.)

Tom Shoop
Government Executive

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The government is still busy even though it’s Spring Break for Congress. In two days, we’ve seen snow and the 10th anniversary of the Department of Homeland Security. Plus, a new conspiracy video is questioning whether President Obama has an alien reptilian shapeshifter as a Secret Service agent. (Don’t believe us…watch for yourself below.) Tom Shoop, editor-in-chief at Government Executive magazine, joined Francis to discuss these stories.

Also on the show:

From Our Reporters:

  • The Army’s goal between now and 2020 is to build a single IT enterprise that stretches all the way from the battlefield to state-side military bases, and connects everything in between. But there’s one major complication — when it comes to having an enterprise view toward IT, the way Congress appropriates money is anything but. Federal News Radio reporter Jared Serbu tells Francis how the Army plans to reach its goal. Listen to Jared’s report.
  • It took a little convincing for investigators and auditors in the Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General to accept new tools for analyzing data. Bryan Jones is the director of the counter measures and performance evaluation, or CAPE, team in the Office of the Inspector General at the Postal Service. He spoke with Executive Editor Jason Miller about how his office helped auditors and investigators see value in the data analytical tools. Read Jason’s report and listen to the interview.
  • In federal IT circles, it has become a truism that agencies spend way too much time and effort doing paperwork in pursuit of better cybersecurity, and not nearly enough on constantly scanning systems to make sure they’re secure. A new roadmap is out to actually implement continuous monitoring and risk mitigation. The report is a joint effort by the National Academy of Public Administration and Julie Anderson, the chief operating officer of Civitas is a co-author of the report. She tells Federal News Radio’s Jared Serbu, the report is intended to be a first step forward in moving agencies away from a “check-the-box” approach to cybersecurity requirements. Read Jared’s full report. (For more cybersecurity news, visit our Cybersecurity Page.)

More News:

On the show today, Francis also aired clips from the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency hearing titled, “How Effectively Has DHS Harnessed IT to Secure Our Borders and Uphold Immigration Laws?” Witnesses included: Margie Graves, deputy chief information officer, DHS; David Powner, director of information technology management issues at the Government Accountability Office; and Charles Edwards, deputy inspector general at DHS. Watch video of the hearing and read opening statements.