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Air Force to require cybersecurity audits of commercial satellite communications providers

8 Nov 2019, 18:43 UTC
Air Force to require cybersecurity audits of commercial satellite communications providers
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RESTON, Va. — The Air Force starting in 2020 will rate the cybersecurity of commercial satellite communications providers in an effort to increase the protection of military networks.
The new program is called Infrastructure Asset Pre-Assessment (IA-Pre) and will be run by the Air Force Space Command’s commercial satellite communications office, Andrew D’Uva, president of Providence Access Company, said Nov. 7 at the CyberSat 2019 conference.
D’Uva is a consultant who represents a coalition of satellite operators that provide services to the U.S. government.
“Since Air Force Space Command has taken over commercial satcom acquisition, they have started to think about cybersecurity in their end to end solutions,” D’Uva said.
By congressional mandate, the Air Force Space Command in December 2018 assumed responsibility for procuring commercial satcom services for the Department of Defense. The job previously belonged to the Defense Information Systems Agency.
D’Uva said the IA-Pre program will be launched sometime in 2020 and the details are being finalized. It will require satcom providers to undergo a third-party audit to ensure they meet NIST 800-53 cybersecurity standards set by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The NIST 800-53 guidelines focus on the protection of the government’s most sensitive ...

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