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Northrop Grumman Gets $189M Cybersecurity Deal

Looking to continue improving cybersecurity across a range of Department of Defense Networks, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA)...

Looking to continue improving cybersecurity across a range of Department of Defense Networks, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) awarded a large task order to Northrop Grumman to serve as the prime integrator on the Host Based Security System (HBSS) program, the company announced March 6.

The deal includes a three-year base period, with two options, potentially worth $189 million.

HBSS, a software suite that includes a variety of protection and network monitoring tools, is required on all DoD networks following a 2007 mandate, and the current deal will include protection for a wide range of devices such as phones and tablets, company spokesmen said.

Northrop will be working with McAfee Security as the prime subcontractor on the program. The two have been providing HBSS software to the U.S. Air Force since 2008, and will share the larger responsibility of covering a variety of both classified and unclassified networks.

“We’ve been at the forefront of this activity since several years back,” said Doyle Choi, vice president of business development for defense enterprise solutions at Northrop.

Choi said that the contract will allow the company to improve its HBSS offering in the coming years.

“We’re enabling additional capabilities as the product matures through its life cycle,” he said. “This is not a static mission. It’s constantly changing, and so we have to adapt to that.”

Although the HBSS program has been around since 2005, with BAE Systems taking the helm at an earlier stage, the recent emphasis has been on new devices, said Tom Conway, director of business development for McAfee.

“They really want to and they’re feeling a pressure to roll out more mobile devices,” he said.

That interest follows the rapid growth of devices used by defense employees, Conway said.

“A few years ago, we had an average of 0.7 end-user devices. It’s now above three for every employee.”

Conway said the software solutions McAfee would be providing with Northrop will aim for flexibility, including a variety of tools that network administrators can employ.

“Think of it as a Swiss army knife,” he said.




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