How technology is trying to replace humans at DOD

Lloyd McCoy Jr.summit-automationBy Lloyd McCoy, DOD manager

If you attended immixGroup’s Government IT Sales Summit on Nov. 17, you probably picked up on a dominant tech trend during our Department of Defense budget briefing: automation.

Automation tools will play a major role at DOD as the organization looks for ways to automate cybersecurity functions, cloud management, and advanced analytics. Taking humans out of the equation can save costs and enable technology to be a force multiplier when it comes to defending DOD networks or fighting off the adversary.

So here’s where automation will play a role:


Automation has great potential in the cyber area. Better automation will allow operators to focus on strengthening and improving the networks, reported Washington Technology’s Nick Wakeman. The military branches and the Office of the Secretary of Defense agencies are looking for ways to automate patching and other security measures within their enterprise.

Right now, cyber is too manual and reactive, making it difficult to achieve real-time situational awareness across the department. Cyber is an area where decisions need to be made in minutes, not hours, so machines will need to do more of the heavy lifting.


The stage is set for more aggressive federal procurement of cloud in the next five years and DOD is no exception. Automation tools will have a toehold here as well.

Contractors and DOD are going to need to work together in situations where multiple cloud service providers are involved. DOD leaders want to make sure they can move data to another provider if it’s attacked as well as have automated patching with multiple providers. The department needs this level of automation to ensure that government network security providers have visibility on the readiness and confidence in the defense of applications that are renting space in the commercial cloud.

Advanced Analytics

Cyber is one area, in particular, the government will want to automate analytics, ultimately getting more predictive and increasing threat detection. “Fight by Indicator” is one such initiative DISA is using to automate its survey of malicious activity. The program was able to increase the amount of countermeasures analysts could implement in a day by 500 percent.

That’s something other DOD customers will be looking to copy—automation of monitoring cyber threats, allowing analysts or operators to spend more time strengthening their networks.

Want more guidance on how automation will play a role at the DOD? Reach out to immixGroup’s Market Intelligence team. And keep an eye out for videos of all the budget briefings and sessions from Summit on our website in mid-December.

About Lloyd McCoy Jr.
Lloyd McCoy is the manager of immixGroup’s Market Intelligence organization, leveraging market analysis and purchasing trends to help immixGroup suppliers and partners shorten their sales cycles. He has a M.S. in Strategic Intelligence from the National Intelligence University, a M.A. in Public Policy and a B.A. in Political Science, both from the University of Maryland. Prior to joining immixGroup, Lloyd was a senior analyst in the Intelligence Community for eight years, serving in a variety of senior analytic and project management positions in the U.S. and abroad.

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