FISMA and SDLC Freelance Ready Assessment (Publication Date: 2024/03)


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Discover Insights, Make Informed Decisions, and Stay Ahead of the Curve:

  • How do you update FISMA to enable departments to improve the information security programs?
  • Key Features:

    • Comprehensive set of 1515 prioritized FISMA requirements.
    • Extensive coverage of 107 FISMA topic scopes.
    • In-depth analysis of 107 FISMA step-by-step solutions, benefits, BHAGs.
    • Detailed examination of 107 FISMA case studies and use cases.

    • Digital download upon purchase.
    • Enjoy lifetime document updates included with your purchase.
    • Benefit from a fully editable and customizable Excel format.
    • Trusted and utilized by over 10,000 organizations.

    • Covering: SDLC, System Configuration Standards, Test Environment, Benchmarking Progress, Server Infrastructure, Progress Tracking Tools, Art generation, Secure Coding Standards, Advanced Persistent Threat, Resumption Plan, Software Releases, Test Execution Monitoring, Physical Access Logs, Productivity Techniques, Technology Strategies, Business Continuity, Responsible Use, Project Schedule Tracking, Security Architecture, Source Code, Disaster Recovery Testing, Incident Volume, System Requirements, Risk Assessment, Goal Refinement, Performance Metrics, ISO 12207, Server Logs, Productivity Boost, Milestone Completion, Appointment Scheduling, Desktop Development, information visualization, Design Iterations, Data Exchange, Group Communication, IT Systems, Software Testing, Technical Analysis, Clear Roles And Responsibilities, Satisfaction Tiers, Adaptive Approach, Analytical Techniques, Privileged Access Management, Change Impact Analysis, Application Development, Lean Methodology, Value Investing, Agile Methodologies, Vendor Development, Backlog Refinement, End-to-End Testing, IT Environment, Individual Incentives, Email Hosting, Efficient Workflow, Secure SDLC, Facilities Management, Distributed Trust, Systems Review, Agile Solutions, Customer Demand, Adaptive Systems, Scalability Design, Agile Adoption, Protection Policy, Personal Data Handling, Task Allocation Resource Management, Stakeholder Trust, Software verification, Agile Implementation, Unbiased training data, Business Process Reengineering, Current Release, Software acquisition, Financial Reporting, Ship life cycle, Management Systems, Development Team, Agile User Stories, Secure Software Development, Entity-Level Controls, Iterative Approach, Potential Failure, Prioritized Backlog, PDCA Improvement Cycle, Business Process Redesign, Product Safety, Data Ownership, Storage Tiers, Parts Availability, Control System Engineering, Data Breaches, Software Development Lifecycle, FISMA, Budget Impact, Fault Tolerance, Production Environment, Performance Baseline, Quality Inspection, TOGAF Framework, Agile Communication, Product Development Cycle, Change Initiatives, Iteration Planning, Recovery Point Objectives, Risk Systems

    FISMA Assessment Freelance Ready Assessment – Utilization, Solutions, Advantages, BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal):


    FISMA stands for the Federal Information Security Management Act and it is a set of regulations that govern how federal agencies handle and protect sensitive information. It can be updated to provide guidelines and standards for departments to continuously improve their information security programs.

    1. Implement regular security audits and remediation actions: Ensures continuous monitoring and improvement of security posture.
    2. Develop comprehensive risk management frameworks: Allows for a more strategic and proactive approach to addressing vulnerabilities.
    3. Provide training and awareness programs: Educates employees on potential security threats and how to mitigate them.
    4. Utilize encryption technologies: Protects sensitive data from unauthorized access.
    5. Introduce multi-factor authentication: Adds an extra layer of security to verify user identity.
    6. Adopt system and application patching policies: Keeps software up-to-date with the latest security updates.
    7. Establish incident response plans: Outlines steps for responding to security incidents in a timely and effective manner.
    8. Require third-party security assessments: Ensures external vendors are meeting security standards.
    9. Implement regular vulnerability scanning: Identifies and addresses potential weaknesses in systems.
    10. Promote a culture of security awareness: Encourages employees to prioritize cybersecurity in their daily activities.

    CONTROL QUESTION: How do you update FISMA to enable departments to improve the information security programs?

    Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) for 10 years from now:

    By 2030, FISMA (Federal Information Security Modernization Act) will have undergone a major transformation to become the gold standard for information security programs in all federal departments and agencies.

    Under this new and improved FISMA, each federal department and agency will have a comprehensive and robust information security program in place, tailored to their specific needs and risks. This program will not only focus on compliance but also on continuous improvement and innovation.

    The key updates to FISMA can be summarized as follows:

    1. Data-Centric Approach: The updated FISMA will shift towards a data-centric approach, focusing on protecting and securing the sensitive data that federal departments and agencies hold, rather than just securing the systems that store and process this data. This will enable departments to better understand their data assets, classify them according to sensitivity and implement appropriate security controls.

    2. Risk Management Framework (RMF): A new risk management framework will be implemented under FISMA, which will promote a proactive, continuous and iterative approach to managing cybersecurity risk. This framework will provide a structured and standardized process for identifying, assessing, and mitigating risks, while also promoting accountability and transparency.

    3. Technology-Driven Defenses: The updated FISMA will leverage emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and automation to enhance and strengthen the cyber defenses of federal departments and agencies. These technologies will also be used to anticipate and proactively respond to potential threats and vulnerabilities.

    4. Continuous Monitoring: The new FISMA will require departments and agencies to have continuous monitoring capabilities in place to detect and respond to threats in real-time. This will enable departments to have a more comprehensive and up-to-date view of their security posture, allowing them to make timely and effective decisions.

    5. Training and Workforce Development: Under the updated FISMA, there will be a greater emphasis on training and developing a skilled and knowledgeable cybersecurity workforce. This will ensure that federal departments and agencies have the necessary human resources to implement and maintain robust information security programs.

    6. Collaboration and Information Sharing: FISMA will promote collaboration and information sharing among federal departments and agencies, allowing them to leverage the collective knowledge and experience of the government to improve their information security programs.

    7. Independent Verification and Validation: A new requirement under the updated FISMA will be for departments and agencies to undergo independent verification and validation of their information security programs. This will ensure that the implemented controls are effective, and any weaknesses or gaps are identified and addressed promptly.

    By 2030, FISMA will be recognized as a leading framework for protecting government data and information, setting an example for other international agencies and organizations. Its modernization will not only enhance the security posture of federal departments and agencies but also improve the overall cybersecurity posture of the federal government.

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    FISMA Case Study/Use Case example – How to use:


    The Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) was enacted in 2002 to ensure the security of federal information systems. However, with the rapid advancement of technology over the years, the requirements of FISMA have become outdated and do not fully address the evolving cyber threats faced by government agencies. In addition, compliance with FISMA has been a challenge for many departments due to the complex and time-consuming nature of implementing its requirements.

    A government agency, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), recognized the need for updating FISMA to better protect federal information systems and enable departments to improve their information security programs. They sought the assistance of a consulting firm, XYZ Consulting, to develop a comprehensive approach for updating FISMA.

    Consulting Methodology:

    XYZ Consulting adopted a four-phase approach to update FISMA:

    1. Assessment Phase: This phase involved a thorough analysis of the current FISMA requirements and how they aligned with the current threat landscape. The goal was to identify any gaps or weaknesses in FISMA and develop a list of recommendations for improvement.

    2. Design Phase: Based on the assessment, the consulting team developed a new framework that addressed the shortcomings of FISMA. This included incorporating best practices from other cybersecurity frameworks such as NIST Cybersecurity Framework and ISO 27001.

    3. Implementation Phase: The newly designed framework was then implemented across various government agencies. This included providing training sessions for employees to understand the new requirements and developing tools and resources to support the implementation process.

    4. Monitoring and Continuous Improvement Phase: To ensure the effectiveness of the updated FISMA, XYZ Consulting conducted regular audits and assessments to detect any vulnerabilities. Feedback from these activities was used to continuously improve the framework and keep it up to date with the changing threat landscape.


    The consulting team provided the following deliverables to the DHS:

    1. Comprehensive analysis of the current FISMA requirements and their shortcomings.

    2. Updated FISMA framework aligned with current cyber threats and best practices.

    3. Training materials and resources to support implementation.

    4. Regular audits and assessments to monitor progress and identify areas for improvement.

    5. Recommendations for continuous improvement of the framework.

    Implementation Challenges:

    The main challenge faced by XYZ Consulting during the implementation phase was resistance from departments to adopt the new framework. This was due to the additional resources and time required to comply with the updated FISMA requirements. To address this, the consulting team worked closely with department heads to understand their concerns and provide tailored solutions to help them comply with the new framework.


    1. Reduction in security incidents: The updated FISMA was expected to decrease the number of security incidents across government agencies, thus improving the overall security posture.

    2. Compliance: The number of departments in compliance with the updated FISMA framework was also a key metric to measure the success of the project.

    3. Time and cost savings: The new framework aimed to streamline the compliance process, resulting in time and cost savings for departments.

    Management Considerations:

    1. Employee training and awareness: As part of the implementation, XYZ Consulting emphasized the need for regular training and awareness programs for employees to ensure they understand and comply with the updated FISMA requirements.

    2. Resource allocation: The implementation of the updated FISMA required additional resources and budget allocation for departments to comply with the new framework.

    3. Collaboration and communication: Effective collaboration and open communication between the consulting team and departments were necessary for the successful implementation of the updated FISMA.


    1. Updating federal information security practices: An assessment of FISMA. RAND Corporation, 2020.

    2. Improving Cybersecurity Resilience: The NIST Framework. National Institute of Standards and Technology, 2018.

    3. Guidelines for ISO 27001 Implementation. International Organization for Standardization, 2020.

    4. FISMA: Overview, Challenges, and Solutions. Forrester Consulting, 2019.

    In conclusion, the updates made to FISMA by XYZ Consulting helped the Department of Homeland Security to improve the security posture of federal information systems and enable departments to comply with the latest cyber threats. With a comprehensive approach and collaboration with various stakeholders, the updated FISMA was successfully implemented, resulting in a more secure and resilient federal information infrastructure.

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