TIC 3.0 Is Shaping Government Network Security to the Edge

By Jessica Parks, Market Intelligence Analyst

In an increasingly interconnected world, we often take for granted the availability and security of networks whenever we sign on to our devices. Agencies are now taking a closer look at the bandwidth and security of their networks and the Department of Homeland Security has been ahead of that curve — working on updating its Trusted Internet Connection (TIC) policy.

Draft guidance on TIC 3.0 is in process, with new documents expected to be published this spring. TIC policy aims to standardize security rules for networks, so you can bet federal agencies will be paying close attention to this guidance as it is released. Here is a look at TIC 3.0 and what it means for you.

Security Moving Out

With more agencies moving away from traditional network perimeters and into complex cloud environments, TIC 3.0 is defining where to secure these networks. One thing is for sure, as TIC 3.0 Program Manager Sean Connelly pointed out at the FCW Cloud Security Workshop in February, TIC 3.0 is moving security tools towards the users and applications themselves.  

While DHS is still developing use cases for TIC 3.0, there’s certainly room here for identity-based authorization as well as multi-factor authentication and edge computing. The Department of Health and Human Services, for example, is piloting behavioral-based identity management at the edge of the network. Expect more agencies to follow a similar path as TIC 3.0 guidance is formalized.

Network Management Flexibility

As networks become more complex it is crucial that TIC 3.0 introduce more flexibility with how agencies manage their networks. With network environments now spanning data centers, public clouds, private clouds, containers, mobile devices, etc., it no longer makes sense to offer your government customers a one-size-fits-all network security solution. Vendors will need to adapt their offerings to better fit changing agency requirements.

TIC 3.0 use cases should help agencies with making these determinations and empower them to procure the solutions that will fit their specific needs, especially with the transition to GSA’s EIS contract meant to help agencies modernize networks.

Keep in mind that a crucial part of security is visibility, and agencies need help with determining what devices are connecting to their networks. Network monitoring solutions can play a role here.

While TIC 3.0 is still in process, take the time to better understand your customers’ complex environments and offer them solutions that address security and flexibility to the edge of their networks.


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About Jessica Parks
Jessica Parks is an analyst with the Market Intelligence team at immixGroup, providing actionable analysis to help technology suppliers shorten their sales cycles. She holds a B.A. from the College of William and Mary and an M.A. in political science from UNC Chapel Hill.

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