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AlertBoot offers a cloud-based full disk encryption and mobile device security service for companies of any size who want a scalable and easy-to-deploy solution. Centrally managed through a web based console, AlertBoot offers mobile device management, mobile antivirus, remote wipe & lock, device auditing, USB drive and hard disk encryption managed services.

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AlertBoot offers a cloud-based full disk encryption and mobile device security service for companies of any size who want a scalable and easy-to-deploy solution. Centrally managed through a web based console, AlertBoot offers mobile device management, mobile antivirus, remote wipe & lock, device auditing, USB drive and hard disk encryption managed services.

Disk Encryption: VA CIO Says All Laptops Encrypted By 2012

The Chief Information Officer for the Veterans Affairs Department (VA) has told reporters that all laptops used by the VA will be encrypted by February 2012.  The race to protect all laptops by using drive encryption software -- something akin to AlertBoot, no doubt -- has been on ever since the VA had a massive data breach in 2006.

2006 and Its Aftermath

In 2006, a laptop belonging to the VA was stolen.  It was one of the largest data breaches reported at the time (a quick Google search shows it to be the "second largest data breach" at the time), with approximately 26.5 million veterans affected.  The laptop was stolen from an employee's home.

Since then, the VA made it a policy to encrypt any and all laptops being used by the department.  Despite its good intentions, however, the VA is still trying to live up to its pledge 5 years later.  Why did it take so long?

The VA Faced Complications

The VA gave its answer as:

...the VA has had a policy of disk-encryption for laptops, but until recently has excepted some laptops running medical applications due to those applications' incompatibility with disk encryption.

However, the VA now says it can reconcile the applications to disk encryption, and so should have every laptop encrypted by February 2012, [VA CIO] Baker added. [fiercegovernmentit.com]

The GAO (I think) has been tracking the VA's efforts in this area every year, and its annual reports criticized the department's slow progress.  I was under the impression that the slow going was due to the complexity that comes with traditional deployments of encryption software for laptops (with AlertBoot, it might actually have gone faster.  We've deployed solutions for over 3,000 endpoint devices for one company in one month, start to finish.  That's just typical for us.).

But, the final stretch appears to have been something that was outside the reach of all individuals concerned.  Well, all things must end, and in this case it looks like I won't be reporting on the VA again beginning on March 2012.

That's a good thing.


Related Articles and Sites:
http://www.fiercegovernmentit.com/story/audio-va-cio-roger-bakers-november-it-report/2011-11-23

 
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About sang_lee

Sang Lee is a Senior Account Manager and Security Analyst with AlertBoot, Inc., the leading provider of managed endpoint security services, based in Las Vegas, NV. Mr. Lee helps with the deployment and ongoing support of the AlertBoot disk encryption managed service. Prior to working at AlertBoot, Mr. Lee served in the South Korean Navy. He holds both a B.S. and an M.S. from Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, U.S.A.