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Homeland Security

Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation (CDM)

About the CDM Program

Whether to provide important information, enable access to essential government services, or store sensitive information, information and communications technology is increasingly essential to fundamental government activities.  While heightened connectivity has transformed and improved access to government, it has also increased the extent and complexity of our shared cybersecurity risk.  Cyber attacks on Federal government networks are growing more sophisticated, frequent, and dynamic.  It is paramount that the government protects networks, systems, and information from unauthorized access or disruption while continually providing essential services to the public and protecting privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties.

The Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation (CDM) program is a dynamic approach to fortifying the cybersecurity of government networks and systems.  CDM provides federal departments and agencies with capabilities and tools that identify cybersecurity risks on an ongoing basis, prioritize these risks based upon potential impacts, and enable cybersecurity personnel to mitigate the most significant problems first.  Congress established the CDM program to provide adequate, risk-based, and cost-effective cybersecurity and more efficiently allocate cybersecurity resources.

How CDM Works

The CDM program enables government entities to expand their continuous diagnostic capabilities by increasing their network sensor capacity, automating sensor collections, and prioritizing risk alerts.

CDM offers commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) tools, with robust terms for technical modernization as threats change. First, agency-installed sensors perform an automated search for known cyber flaws. Results feed into a local dashboard that produces customized reports, alerting network managers to their worst and most critical cyber risks based on standardized and weighted risk scores. Prioritized alerts enable agencies to efficiently allocate resources based on the severity of the risk. Progress reports track results, which can be used to compare security posture among department/agency networks.  Summary information can feed into an enterprise-level dashboard to inform and situational awareness into cybersecurity risk posture across the federal government.

Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation Process

Last Published Date: June 24, 2014
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