2023 Information Security and Innovation Forum
Watch Recording

2023 Information Security and Innovation Forum

Recorded on Tuesday, February 28, 2023 8:00am-10:00am EST   Virtual, ON24

With the relatively recent proliferation of sensors, Internet of Things-connected devices and digitally enabled assets, organizations are seeing a massive influx of data that needs protection. 

This increase in data and information that may be interesting to our country’s adversaries also leads to a rise in cyber threats and potential attacks — today, government and industry organizations alike must leverage best practices, new methodologies and advanced technologies to better secure their information and protect against harmful breaches.

The GovCon Wire Information Security and Innovation Forum gathers leading voices from government and industry to talk about the current threat landscape, how organizations can improve their information security and what industry can do to help federal agencies achieve their most important and challenging security missions.

  • Paul Blahusch
    Paul Blahusch -
    Chief Information Security Officer Cybersecurity Directorate, U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)

    Paul Blahusch has over 20 years of cyber and IT security experience with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). He serves as the Director of Cybersecurity and the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) for DOL in the Office of the Chief Information Officer. In this role, Mr. Blahusch supports the Department’s overall mission by promoting and bolstering enterprise-wide cybersecurity efforts. He previously served as the Information Technology Security Officer for the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As CISO, he is responsible for security initiatives within the Department of Labor, including but not limited to regulatory compliance and oversight, Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA) implementation and planning, computer awareness and training, and computer security incident response. His role in the Department also involves collaborating with senior leadership to integrate information security with capital planning, enterprise architecture, and information collection initiatives. Paul Blahusch holds a Bachelor of Science in Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University. He is also a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

  • Robert Costello
    Robert Costello -
    Chief Information Officer, U.S. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)

    Robert (Bob) Costello is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). As the CIO, he leads the Agency’s efforts to develop, deploy, secure, and support technology solutions for the agency. Prior to this, he was a Public Sector Civilian Strategic Advisor at World Wide Technology. In this role, he engaged with federal government customers to identify and solve their most complex challenges, leveraging his extensive federal agency experience to develop and deliver innovative solutions that meet their needs and serve their mission. Bob brings a wealth of experience serving over 13 years at DHS, both at Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection. He also served as the Senior Executive Service as the Executive Director (XD) of the Office of Information and Technology (OIT) Enterprise Networks and Technology Support Directorate (ENTSD) at CBP, as well as serving concurrently in the role of Acting XD of the Border Enforcement and Management Systems Directorate. During his tenure in ENTSD, he oversaw the modernization of the largest data network in DHS, improved connectivity to cloud service providers, and dramatically increased the agency’s usage of mobility platforms. He also oversaw the agency’s movement to the TIC 3.0 framework and implemented zero trust solutions at the network level. He led the operations of the agency’s land mobile radio network, the National Law Enforcement Communications Center, and maintenance of the non-intrusive inspection systems utilized at all ports of entry. He also directed all software development for the U.S. Border Patrol, and all of the agency’s mission support systems, moving over 100 applications to a SECDEVOPS development methodology. He was also heavily involved in implementing IT solutions for COVID-19, redesigning remote access solutions and deploying several new applications. Earlier in his career, Costello served as the Deputy Executive Director (DXD) and acting XD for OIT’s Field Support Directorate (FSD) supporting information technology, radio systems, and enforcement technologies worldwide, as well as worked at ICE as the Director of Network Engineering overseeing networks worldwide and implementing solutions for mobility and datacenter migrations, e-discovery, and collaboration solutions. Costello is a nine-year veteran of the U.S Air Force and U.S. Air Force Reserves. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Leadership from Fordham University and is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional and Project Management Professional.

  • Beau Houser
    Beau Houser -
    Chief Information Security Officer of the U.S Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Commerce

    Beau Houser serves as the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) for the U.S. Census Bureau where he leads the agency’s cybersecurity program. Prior to joining the Census Bureau, he served as the CISO for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Deputy CISO at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services where he fulfilled the role of Executive Director for Marketplace Security, which included cybersecurity responsibilities for healthcare.gov. He was recently awarded the 2021 CyberScoop 50 Award in the category of Government Leadership. He was also recognized with a Gears of Government award for Innovation and Modernization of the SBA IT Enterprise. He holds a master’s degree in Cyber Systems and Operations from the Naval Postgraduate School and a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology from Barry University. He also holds an Information Systems Security Professional certification with a concentration in Engineering.

  • Kaus Phaltankar
    Kaus Phaltankar -
    Co-Founder and CEO, Caveonix

    Kaus Phaltankar most recently served as a Senior Vice President for Dell Technologies. Before that Kaus was Global President of Virtustream Security Solutions, a Dell Technologies company, where he was an evangelist and a technology leader developing compliance and risk management solutions for private, public and hybrid clouds, globally. Kaus was the founder and CEO at ViewTrust Technology where he developed and implemented solutions for cloud and enterprise Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Continuous Compliance Automation and Risk Monitoring. Virtustream acquired ViewTrust in 2014. Kaus has US patents for designing advanced data center architecture for the highest level of resiliency and reliability and authored the book “Implementing Secure Intranets and Extranets,” with a foreword by Internet pioneer Dr. Vint Cerf. He has presented at the World Bank, AFCEA, and the National Defense University, and is an adjunct professor at the University of Miami, teaching a course in Cyber Security.

  • James Scobey
    James Scobey -
    Chief Information Security Officer, Office of Information Technology [OIT], U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

    James Scobey serves as the Chief Information Security Officer for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. As CISO, Mr. Scobey is responsible for guiding, planning, and implementing the agency’s cybersecurity program. Mr. Scobey has over 25 years of federal and private sector experience in information technology. Prior to assuming his role as CISO he served as the Chief Technology Officer and the Assistant Direction, Cybersecurity Operations at the SEC. Previous roles include leadership positions at the MITRE Corporation, FEDDATA, and S2i2, Inc. Mr. Scobey received a Bachelor of Science in computer science and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Maryland. He also received a Master of Engineering in cybersecurity policy and compliance from the George Washington University.

  • 8:00am - 8:05am EST

    Welcome and Introductions

  • 8:05am - 8:55am EST

    Keynote: Robert Costello
    Keynote Introducer: Kaus Phaltankar

  • 8:55am - 9:55am EST

    Building Cyber Defense: A strategic approach to streamlining and accelerating ATO and transitioning to cATO Panel: Paul Blahusch, Beau Houser, Kaus Phaltankar (Moderator) and James Scobey

  • 9:55am - 10:00am EST

    Closing Comments

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