The Department of Defense is building out their new cybersecurity certification. Contractors who receive the certification are eligible to work on the Pentagon’s IT infrastructure, and depending on their qualifications, handle sensitive data. The department is looking for feedback on their latest revision. Eric Crusius, partner at Holland & Knight, says that interested small businesses still have questions that need to be answered.
“Small businesses aren’t sure where they are going to fit in all of this. They are concerned that it is going to be very expensive. DoD has assured companies it isn’t going to be expensive, and those costs can be lumped into contract expenses, especially If it is a cost type contract. They are concerned that they won’t be able to meet those standards as well, because they are small businesses and a lot of them will not handle the kind of information that the DoD is trying to protect.” Crusius said. “There’s concern about timing, there is a very aggressive time schedule that DoD has. IF they can do it, that’s great, because cybersecurity is critical, but there’s concern that these requirements are going into RFPs late next year, and DoD has to find ways to get companies on board.”