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Paul Cunningham: VA Making Progress on Improving Cybersecurity Posture

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Paul Cunnigham, chief information security officer of the Department of Veterans Affairs, said the VA achieved modernization milestones and is working with the Department of Homeland Security to improve cybersecurity, Federal News Network reported Thursday.

Cunningham said that despite the VA’s recurring cybersecurity challenges, the department has made progress with implementing a centralized approach through its new Office of Quality, Process and Risk. He added that the department continues to achieve continuous diagnostics and mitigation program goals and deployed technologies designed to discover hardware assets on its network.

According to Cunningham, the VA has “a very strong relationship” with DHS and is working with the department on a 30-month “request for service” initiative that may help the VA deploy better identity and access management capabilities.

Cunningham’s comments come after the release of the VA’s Federal Information Security Management Act audit which cites cybersecurity as a pervasive problem for the department. VA’s Office of the Inspector General has also cited progress in the department’s cyber efforts, which include an initiative to update its cybersecurity and privacy strategy to cover National Institute of Standards and Technology requirements.