Pentagon Police Agency Hit by ‘Catastrophic’ Network Outage

The outage left the agency “without access to the mission-critical systems needed to properly safeguard personnel and facilities, rendering the agency blind across the national capital region.”

National Journal
Bob Brewin, NextGov
May 6, 2014, 10:26 a.m.

 The agency that man­ages the Pentagon Po­lice De­part­ment  and also runs net­works and com­puters used  the by the  Of­fice of the Sec­ret­ary of De­fense ex­per­i­enced a “cata­stroph­ic net­work tech­no­lo­gic­al out­age” on Jan. 3, and it could take un­til Janu­ary 2015 to com­plete the re­pairs, an ob­scure doc­u­ment on the Fed­er­al Busi­ness Op­por­tun­it­ies web­site re­vealed

That doc­u­ment, pos­ted on May 2, dis­closed that the out­age ex­per­i­enced by the Pentagon Life Safety Sys­tem Net­work and Life Safety Back­bone left the Pentagon Force Pro­tec­tion Agency “without ac­cess to the mis­sion-crit­ic­al sys­tems needed to prop­erly safe­guard per­son­nel and fa­cil­it­ies, ren­der­ing the agency blind across the na­tion­al cap­it­al re­gion.”

The Force Pro­tec­tion Agency provides se­cur­ity and ser­vices to 100 mil­it­ary build­ings in Wash­ing­ton, Mary­land and Vir­gin­ia.

The agency es­tim­ated it would take six to 12 months to “ef­fect re­pairs and to up­grade the net­work core to mit­ig­ate fu­ture out­age risks.” Re­pairs in­clude re­cov­ery of data after the cata­stroph­ic net­work tech­no­lo­gic­al out­age and up­grade and re­place­ment of switches and routers.

SRA In­ter­na­tion­al Inc. won a $56 mil­lion con­tract for the Life Safety Sys­tem Net­work in 2008 that ex­pired on April 30. The Force Pro­tec­tion Agency falls un­der the Wash­ing­ton Headquar­ters Ser­vice, which ex­ten­ded the SRA con­tract through Oct. 31, with a value of $7.3 mil­lion, and a four month op­tion through Feb. 28, 2015, with a total value of $11.4 mil­lion.

The sole source con­tract ex­ten­sion with SRA called for re­freshed hard­ware and soft­ware for the Life Sys­tem Safety Net­work, a new net­work design that min­im­izes single point fail­ure, in­clud­ing dual hom­ing, which re­duces the risk of fail­ure.

As the in­cum­bent on Life Safety Sys­tem Net­work con­tract, “SRA is the only known vendor who has ex­pert se­cur­ity-cleared per­son­nel that can im­me­di­ately ac­com­plish this ur­gent up­grade giv­en their ex­ist­ing know­ledge of the spe­cif­ic LSB tech­nic­al and ar­chi­tec­tur­al chal­lenges, and in-depth know­ledge of the ex­ist­ing in­fra­struc­ture to in­clude the known and po­ten­tial fail­ure points of an ex­tremely com­plex en­vir­on­ment,” the Wash­ing­ton Headquar­ters Ser­vice said.

The Pentagon has not yet re­spon­ded to a query sub­mit­ted Sunday on the gen­er­al cause of the out­age nor to a query earli­er Tues­day morn­ing on wheth­er or not it was caused by a hack­er.

What We're Following See More »
STAFF PICKS
Reagan Families, Allies Lash Out at Will Ferrell
45 minutes ago
WHY WE CARE

Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."

Source:
PEAK CONFIDENCE
Clinton No Longer Running Primary Ads
3 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-ex­pec­ted primary battle be­hind her, former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton (D) is no longer go­ing on the air in up­com­ing primary states. “Team Clin­ton hasn’t spent a single cent in … Cali­for­nia, In­di­ana, Ken­tucky, Ore­gon and West Vir­gin­ia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “cam­paign has spent a little more than $1 mil­lion in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone back­er in the Sen­ate, said the can­did­ate should end his pres­id­en­tial cam­paign if he’s los­ing to Hil­lary Clin­ton after the primary sea­son con­cludes in June, break­ing sharply with the can­did­ate who is vow­ing to take his in­sur­gent bid to the party con­ven­tion in Phil­adelphia.”

Source:
CITIZENS UNITED PT. 2?
Movie Based on ‘Clinton Cash’ to Debut at Cannes
4 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

The team behind the bestselling "Clinton Cash"—author Peter Schweizer and Breitbart's Stephen Bannon—is turning the book into a movie that will have its U.S. premiere just before the Democratic National Convention this summer. The film will get its global debut "next month in Cannes, France, during the Cannes Film Festival. (The movie is not a part of the festival, but will be shown at a screening arranged for distributors)." Bloomberg has a trailer up, pointing out that it's "less Ken Burns than Jerry Bruckheimer, featuring blood-drenched money, radical madrassas, and ominous footage of the Clintons."

Source:
INFLUENTIAL APPROPRIATOR
Former Sen. Conrad Burns Dies in Montana
5 hours ago
THE DETAILS

Conrad Burns, the colorful livestock auctioneer and radio executive from Montana who served three terms as a senator, died on Thursday at age 81. Burns "was ousted from office in 2006 under the specter of scandal after developing close ties to "super-lobbyist" Jack Abramoff," although no charges were ever filed.

Source:
BETTING ON CARS
Biden Goes Max Biden at the Vatican
5 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

In an exchange not ripped from the page of The Onion, Vice President Biden revealed to a Vatican cardinal that he's been betting reporters on which cars are faster. After meeting privately with Pope Francis, Biden met with Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State. Within moments of greeting one another, Biden said that he'd met with the pope and, gesturing to the press pool, "I've met with these guys too." Singling out reporter Gardiner Harris, who recounted the exchange, he said, "I had to pay this man $10. He's from the New York Times. We had a bet: which is the faster car, the newer Cadillac or the new [Tesla]. ... The Tesla's two tenths of a second faster. But I lost. I paid my $10." He joked that he's "seeking absolution."

×