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GAO’s Vijay D’Souza: IT Underlies All Functions in Operational Continuity Plans

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Vijay D'Souza
Vijay D'Souza

Vijay D’Souza, director of information technology and cybersecurity at the Government Accountability Office (GAO), has said that agencies should establish a continuity of operations plan to prepare for uncontrollable disruptions, Federal News Network reported Thursday.

D’Souza told the publication in an interview that IT serves as the foundation of a continuity plan that supports other elements such as records management and human resources operations.

He noted that agencies should also consider using third-party cloud services as well as backup platforms. However, some IT functions such as equipment maintenance, patch installment and replacement work need to be done within agency facilities, D'Souza added.

“They basically need to start out by identifying the risks to their systems,” he said.  “I mentioned a natural disaster or it can be something like a pandemic ꟷ what you have to do is think about how each of those risks would affect each of the particular systems you have.”

D’Souza’s comments come after GAO recently released its Disaster Resilience Framework to help agencies ensure continuous operations.