Data experts Eileen Vidrine, chief data officer (CDO) at the U.S. Air Force, and Jeremy Wilson, multi-factor authentication statewide program manager for the State of Texas, gathered on Oct. 19 at the Dell Technologies North America Forum to share their insights on data protection measures and the importance of keeping data secure.

Wilson explained that the State of Texas recently brought on a CDO that has made both the Open Data Portal and Closed Data Portal projects his priorities to keep track of which data should be made accessible to the public and which sensitive data should not be.

“To me, those initiatives are really helpful, but it’s all about knowing where your data is, data protection measures, data loss prevention,” Wilson said. “And like I said, you know, making sure that when people are trying to do those valid data searches, if they’re able to get that data quickly.”

Vidrine also emphasized the importance of being able to access data quickly and securely, especially to support the warfighter.

“Obviously, mission data is protected, but it’s really about making sure that we catalog and tag, so we have visible, accessible data at the speed of mission and at the speed of relevancy to support our warfighter and our military departments, and our allied partners,” Vidrine said. “So, it’s not one of us doing it, it’s really that whole collaborative effort to make that happen.”

Wilson also took the time to acknowledge that while it’s important to keep one’s data secure, he hopes threat intel sharing can improve between the Federal government and state and local governments.

“Sometimes there’s, you know, Eileen might have something going on in her organization, it’s on the confidential side, but then how do we get that information unclassified and distributed across the state and local government space,” Wilson said. “There’s a lot of Federal entities that are taking that on, but that can also be challenging getting it down to that city to that county or across all the state and local government space.”

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Grace Dille
Grace Dille
Grace Dille is MeriTalk SLG's Staff Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.