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Data Protection: How to Benefit From GSA's New SmartBUY Initiative

NCJ Number
Homeland Defense Journal Volume: 5 Issue: 9 Dated: September 2007 Pages: 40-43
Don Philpott
Date Published
September 2007
4 pages
This article explains the SmartBUY (Software Managed and Acquired on the Right Terms) initiative of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), which has involved the awarding of 10 contracts for blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) designed to enable protection for sensitive, unclassified data in government laptops, other mobile computing devices, and removable storage media devices.
The encryption of data-at-rest (DAR) information is now possible through these BPAs, using the Department of Defense's Enterprise Software Initiative and GSA's government-wide SmartBUY programs. GSA's SmartBUY program will provide all acquisition support for civilian agencies, including State and local governments. In addition to saving taxpayer dollars, this program enhances DAR information security by requiring vendors to meet stringent technical and information assurance requirements. The Department of Defense's Data-at-Rest Tiger Team (DARTT) was created to address technical requirements for SmartBUY vendors. Eventually, the DARTT evolved into an interagency team composed of 20 Defense Department components, 18 Federal agencies, and NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization). Three categories of software and hardware encryption products are available under the BPAs: full disk encryption (FDE), file encryption (FES), and integrated FDE/FES products. Licenses are transferable within a Federal agency and include secondary use rights. This article lists the vendors involved in the 10 DAR encryption agreements under SmartBUY, as well as authorized users. Information is provided on how to place a SmartBUY order, volume discounts, the negotiation of lower prices, and DAR encryption evaluation.


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