How Disaster Tech Honors National Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month

Nov 25, 2020 10:51:24 AM

As we all prepare for a unique holiday season, we should not let the month pass without recognizing the importance of Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month. As we all begin our celebrations, hopefully virtually, it's clear that we've become more dependent upon sectors such as IT and communications which ensure our internet and phone services are available. Although IT and communication may seem like the top priority, we'd be remiss if we didn't acknowledge the rest of our growing dependencies as we're all doing our best to stay safe at home. For example, here's a non-exhaustive list of infrastructure we should show thanks to this year: 

  • Food and agriculture sector: ensure our food supply is protected.  
  • Transportation sector: assists grocery stores with making sure their shelves are adequately stocked.  
  • Water and wastewater sectorguarantee that we have potable water in our homes and that our wastewater systems are operational 
  • Energy sector: allows us to cook inside our homes with gas or electric range ovens. 
  • Financial services sector: gives us the option of purchasing goods online in a safe and secure environment.  
  • Healthcare and public health and emergency servicesare there for us to ensure the sick are being cared for and are ready to help us if we end up overindulging as we often do.  

Many of the above services and those of the other 16 critical infrastructure sectors are vital to keeping our nation safe, secure, and prosperous. Their activities go on behind the scenes and are often taken for granted. As a public benefit company, we want to take a moment and thank all of the organizations and individuals involved in keeping our nation moving forward. 

This year, consistent with every other Presidential transition, will lead to a new series of priorities for our federal government. Many of these priorities will filter down to our state, local, tribal, territorial, and private sector colleagues through partnerships, grants, contracts, and other mechanisms. As we look at these new priorities, the commitment to strengthening our nation's critical infrastructure must continue. As we tackle the challenges of aging infrastructure, climate change, workforce challenges, and the ever-evolving dynamic threat landscape, we must prepare to defend against natural and human-made threats from domestic and foreign actors. This needs to include not only physical security but cyber security. 
In addition to physical security and IT hardware/software solutions, much of the success will depend upon how well we strengthen our information sharing capabilities. While we have developed many programs over the last two decades to further enhance these efforts, private companies and the government can do more. We need to ensure that the right information gets to the right people, at the right time, in a secure manner, to better inform decision making. Decisions are made at all government levels and in the private sector using the "best available" information but not "all of the available information," a goal we need to continue to strive for 

The above statement on information sharing does not mean we share everything with everybody. Instead, we at Disaster Tech believe that the nation and the world should take information security more seriously. This protection of information is a significant issue that must be actively addressed, and we believe we can enhance information sharing while balancing safety with security. Balancing safety with security will not be easy, but it is possible if we all do our part. 

At Disaster Tech, we are committed to finding and maintaining that balance. Our platform is based on an opensource architecture, allowing innovation to lead the way while also ensuring that security is at the forefront of our minds. From obtaining security certification through Microsoft and developing both open and private data lakes – we can allow our clients to benefit from each other's progress while at the same time ensuring that sensitive information that an adversary may be looking for remains secure.  

Being integrated into Microsoft Teams and the Azure environmentData science Integrated Collaboration Environment (DICE) allows you to set access parameters based on current system privileges. When an employee takes a new role, the administrator can grant access immediately to those who need it. Similarly, if an employee departs, access can be removed immediately. There's no need to access a second system or third party to maintain operational security. 

As the leader in decision science technologies for disaster management, we are committed to ensuring that decision-makers throughout the public and private sectors feel empowered with all available data that allows them to make the most decisive decisions possible for their respective constituencies as timely, safely and securely as possible.  

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