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Ms. Stacy Watson CHESS award recognition

By CHESS Public Affairs

Ms. Stacy R. Watson is recognized for her outstanding contributions to the Army in her role as the Enterprise Solutions Director at the Computer Hardware Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) Program.
Ms. Stacy R. Watson is recognized for her outstanding contributions to the Army in her role as the Enterprise Solutions Director at the Computer Hardware Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) Program.

Stacy is the recipient of the prestigious Contracting Professional of the Year Award from the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Procurement (DASA-P), as part of the 2017 Excellence in Contracting Awards, recognizing teams and individuals that have excelled in productivity, process improvement, client satisfaction and quality enhancement. Her leadership and contracting expertise has allowed the Army to achieve unprecedented savings for Information Technology acquisition. Congratulations, Stacy, for your incredible accomplishment!

Posted August 30, 2018

PhalanX: The Shield of the Army’s Network

By Program Manager I3C2


Product Manager (PdM) Defensive Cyber Operations (DCO) will soon unveil the latest prototype of the defensive cyber platform known as PhalanX. The PhalanX system will fuel the Cyber Protection Brigade’s (CPB) Mission Planning by allowing the unit to conduct passive network visualization. Essentially, PhalanX works by synchronizing the CPB’s various defensive cyber components into one interface. Its holistic functions will protect the network from cyber-attacks in real time, and at the speed of the enemy.

“Think of PhalanX as command and control for the Cyber Protection Brigade,” said Lt. Col. Scott Helmore, DCO’s PdM. “The PhalanX software platform integrates all the CPB’s other defensive cyber capabilities into a one-stop-shop.”

The first edition of PhalanX was delivered to the CPB in mid-February at Fort Gordon, Georgia. Additional rollouts of upgraded versions will be released as capabilities expand. Initial training exercises of PhalanX 1.0 yielded key wins and lessons learned. A major win was the successful integration of two defensive cyber tool suits, Splunk and Endgame. The tool suites are collaboratively used to discover, mitigate, clear, and remediate cyber-attacks.

PhalanX 1.0 now gives CPB planners and operators the power to conduct effective mission analysis by promoting an understanding of the network environment, surveying available resources, assessing readiness of teams, and visualizing network activities while describing and directing operations to meet threat challenges.

The platform also identifies key training requirements to meet the supported commander’s end-state. The capabilities operate from a tailorable mission dashboard (UI/UX) that enables the Army to understand the operational activities of CPB, and their associated missions, composition, and disposition of the force. Additionally, the platform demonstrates integration with other PdM DCO programs, like Cyber Analytics and DCO tools desired by the CPB.

Future PhalanX development will tailor the system’s general dynamics into distinct features, such as Army specific visuals and icons.

“We don’t expect every vendor to show up with products that are 100% ready to be inserted into the Army,” said Lt. Col. Helmore. “We collaborate with industry to adapt systems to a more Army-specific environment.”

PhalanX builds upon five years of research and development at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) under the PlanX program. The next phase of the system, PhalanX 2.0, is to be released by DCO in late July.

The team is orienting its development on enhancing the battlespace (UI), planning and armory (App Store) modules. Key features of CR 2.0 include the parsing of mission orders, network visualization, advancements in team communication, and integration with the Army hardware platforms DDS (Deployable DCO System) and GDP (Garrison DCO Platform). These efforts will be leveraged and on display during future training exercises, by both service and geographical Cyber Protection Teams.

Major Shakena Evans, a DCO Assistant Project Manager (APM), says ongoing developments of PhalanX will provide increased advantage to Soldiers fighting in the cyber domain: “The Army’s investment in the PhalanX capability ensures that Services Cyber mission forces retain a significant advantage in a domain that presents not only daily challenges from adversaries but openly exposes vulnerabilities to our forces in the field.”

The name PhalanX derives from an ancient, Greek word that is defined as a group of heavily armed infantry formed in ranks and files close and deep, with shields joined and long spears overlapping. PhalanX represents the metaphorical shield that will be used to protect the Army’s networks.

Posted August 06, 2018

Defensive Cyber Operations (DCO) Announces COBRA OTA

By DCO Public Affairs

The Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems (PEO EIS) is pleased to announce the Cyber Operations Broad Responsive Agreement (COBRA) Other Transaction Agreement (OTA), W52P1J-18-9-5023, formed in accordance with 10 U.S. Code § 2371b for prototype projects.

Established by the Program Manager Defensive Cyber Operations (PM DCO) on behalf of PEO EIS’ Installation Information Infrastructure Communications and Capability’s Project Manager (PM I3C2), and in conjunction with Army Contracting Command - Rock Island (ACC-RI), the COBRA OTA is executed with SOSSEC Inc., which will serve as the Consortium Administrative Organization (CAO) representing the SOSSEC Consortium.

As the CAO, SOSSEC Inc. has the legal authority to speak for, organize, and commit the consortia it represents, and shall be responsible for effectively establishing and/or managing a consortium whose members will execute projects identified for action within the COBRA.

The purpose of COBRA is to spur innovative development, demonstration, and expedited delivery of prototypes to increase Armed Forces readiness via rapid and responsive projects. The SOSSEC consortium was selected to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the PEO EIS mission, the cyber community, and the Department of Defense through a wide range of efforts which include but are not limited to critical research, experiments, development, testing, modeling, architecture, and evaluation of innovative technology to support prototype efforts. These efforts enhance the mission effectiveness of military personnel and the supporting platforms, systems, components, or materials proposed to be acquired or developed by the Department of Defense (DOD), or improve upon platforms, systems, components, or materials in use by the Armed Forces.

Within the agreement will be the Cyberspace - Real Time Acquisition Prototyping Innovation Development (C-RAPID) acquisition process, which is focused on rapidly delivering prototypes to Soldiers.

The COBRA OTA is established for an initial period of five years from date of award, with an option for extension.

Parties interested in participating in the COBRA OTA should contact the Agreements Officer at ACC-RI.

For more information, please visit: https://www.fbo.gov/index?s=opportunity&mode=form&id=a6823cc75c5c98715e62e4ce7b57d9b9&tab=core&_cview=0

Posted August 01, 2018