Big Secrets or Big Lies?

Summary:Thanks to TechDirt for pointing this one out. The Baltimore Sun reports a $300M software screw-up at the National Security Agency.

Thanks to TechDirt for pointing this one out. The Baltimore Sun reports a $300M software screw-up at the National Security Agency. Here is the general background, from the Sun:

Two technology programs at the heart of the National Security Agency’s drive to combat 21st-century threats are stumbling badly, hampering the agency’s ability to fight terrorism and other emerging threats, current and former government officials say.

One is Cryptologic Mission Management, a computer software program with an estimated cost of $300 million that was designed to help the NSA track the implementation of new projects but is so flawed that the agency is trying to pull the plug. The other, code-named Groundbreaker, is a multibillion-dollar computer systems upgrade that frequently gets its wires crossed.

Also from the article: 

These two programs, in combination with the NSA’s $1.2 billion threat-sniffing initiative called Trailblazer, were to be the engine that would propel the formerly cutting-edge intelligence agency into the digital age. The Sun disclosed last month that six years after it was launched, the Trailblazer program consists of little more than blueprints on a wall. 

And this:

…there are no agency-wide controls to make sure effective fixes are put in place, and, with the demise of the mission management program, none will be in place anytime soon.

 And also this:

A group of private contractors known as the Eagle Alliance, led by Computer Sciences Corp., is running the project. A spokeswoman for CSC directed a reporter to the NSA for comment.

For those who don’t remember, CSC was also involved with the FBI Virtual Case File fiasco. The article is well-researched, with lots of detail, and I urge you to read it. This project is beyond jokes and funny stuff; it’s really that bad. Read the article.

Topics: Oracle


Michael Krigsman is recognized internationally as an analyst, strategy advisor, enterprise advocate, and blogger. For CIOs and IT leadership, he addresses issues such as innovation, business transformation, project-related business objectives and strategy, and vendor planning. For enterprise software vendors and venture-funded star... Full Bio

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