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03/18/2020
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WorkScoop

Agency telework causes early headaches

We've already reported how the Pentagon's networks are stressed as the federal government goes to maximum telework capacity in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. Agencies on the civilian side too are running into physical and logistical hurdles as they send workers to work from home. One office within the Department of Energy has found the agency’s systems can’t handle all of its employees teleworking simultaneously. “We are considering giving people flexible work hours, so not everybody is on the system at the same time,” Melody Bell in Energy's Office of Environmental Management said Tuesday. “Right now we are having a critical challenge with bandwidth and everybody taxing the system at the same time, so we were just talking about having people adjust their hours and that we limit the number of people on the Citrix system at the same time.” Bell's office is but one example. Dave Nyczepir has more on agencies' struggles.


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A new head of security clearances

In non-coronavirus news, the Department of Defense named a permanent official to head its new security clearance agency. William Lietzau will start as director of the Defense Counterintelligence Security Agency (DCSA) at the end of the month, replacing Charlie Phalen Jr., who has been the acting director of the agency since July 2019. During that time, DCSA has consolidated about 95% of the federal background check and security clearance process under a single agency. Jackson Barnett has the news.


F-35 software system still struggling to meet expectations

The central nervous system that powers the F-35 fighter jet is once again on the hot seat. The Government Accountability Office issued the results of a nearly two-year-long audit of the F-35 Lightning II aircraft’s Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS) this week that found continuing issues with the system’s data accuracy, deployment, user experience, training and more. In some areas, the Department of Defense and contractor Lockheed Martin have made progress in redesigning the system. But largely, the partners lack a strategy for how they will achieve that, the GAO said. Billy Mitchell has more from the report.


A podcast while you telework?

The coronavirus has upended normal American life. President Donald Trump last week issued a national emergency in response to the virus' spread in the U.S. It’s times like these that the government must rise to the occasion and provide services to impacted citizens, Gov Actually hosts Danny Werfel and Dan Tangherlini say in the latest episode of the podcast. This new episode dives into government’s ability to respond during times of crisis and how it all connects back to things like the budget and more. Dan and Danny draw up personal experiences during their leadership in the federal government, like the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Hurricane Katrina and more. Listen to Gov Actually.


DOJ stands against coronavirus-fueled phishing

The Department of Justice is taking a strong stand against scammers looking to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic by spreading COVID-19-themed spearphishing emails. Attorney General William Barr has prioritized prosecuting cybercriminals seeking to exploit fears about the coronavirus, he said in a letter sent to all U.S. attorneys on Monday. “The pandemic is dangerous enough without wrongdoers seeking to profit from public panic and this sort of conduct cannot be tolerated,” Barr said in the memo, obtained by CyberScoop. CyberScoop's Shannon Vavra has more.


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