The President’s 218-page FY 2015 federal budget request was released a week ago and it underscores the growing importance of cybersecurity. The word “cyber”, for example, appears 40 times in the budget. Collaboration is another major theme and Obama’s proposed request “identifies and promotes cross-agency cybersecurity indicatives and priorities, including improving cybersecurity information sharing while protecting privacy, civil liberties and enhancing state and local capacity to respond to cyber-incidents.”
In addition to the Pentagon’s request for $5.1 billion in funding for cybersecurity, GSA is requesting $35 million to establish a civilian cybersecurity center in the D.C metro area to consolidate various federal agencies. GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini says the goal is to shift approximately 600,000 square feet of leased space to a federally owned building. “We’re spending substantial amounts of resources on rent to maintain multiple, separate activities that we think could provide value if they were consolidated and co-located in single state-of-the-art campus, recognizing that this is the type of work that we’re going to need to do in a collaborative way going forward,” he says. The plan is still in its initial stages, however it will be interesting to see how the proposal is received on the Hill, and ultimately how it will be implemented. 600,000 square feet is significant even in an office market the size of Washington.