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DHS S&T Awards $1.7 Million to McLean, Virginia Company for Mobile Security Research

DHS S&T Awards $1.7 Million to McLean, Virginia Company for Mobile Security Research

Release Date: 
August 12, 2015

For Immediate Release
DHS Science & Technology Press Office
Contact: John Verrico, (202) 254-2385

Washington, D.C. – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) today announced a $1.7 million cybersecurity Mobile Technology Security (MTS) research and development (R&D) award that will help secure mobile devices for the federal government. The Broad Agency Announcement HSHQDC-14-R-B0015 by the Cyber Security Division awarded the contract to Northrop Grumman Corporation from McLean, Virginia to work on mobile security research in device instrumentation.

“A cyber attack on a mobile device can be just as severe as an attack on an organization’s computer network,” said DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology Dr. Reginald Brothers. “S&T is developing innovative R&D solutions to help secure mobile devices against current and emerging threats.”

 The MTS award is a part of the Mobile Device Security (MDS) R&D project which aims to accelerate the adoption of secure mobility by government and private sector organizations. The MDS project is developing R&D technologies in mobile device instrumentation, transactional security methods, mobile security management tools and mobile device layer protection.

 Northrop Grumman’s work in mobile device instrumentation will result in a system that will enable user authentication and continuous risk assessment based on the user’s behavior, device sensors, device policies, and enterprise security policies. Specifically, the system will track user behavior while operating in the background and comparing recent behaviors observed against a machine-learning-enhanced user profile. This will enable the system to prompt users for authentication when anomalies are detected. If a user is not able to authenticate, the device will locked or in extreme situations be wiped automatically.

 “The popularity of mobility and lack of security in mobile devices have made mobile devices an appealing target for cyber attacks,” said Cyber Security Division MDS Program Manager Vincent Sritapan. “The MDS project will research and develop secure mobile technologies that use device sensors to keep sensitive information safe for users and organizations using mobile devices.”

 The successful launch of this R&D project will enable S&T to provide cutting-edge, secure technologies to the Department, government, and enterprising organizations to help create a secure and seamless mobile experience.

 For more information, visit scitech.dhs.gov/cyber-research or email SandT-Cyber-Liaison@HQ.DHS.GOV.

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