OMB to Require Standard Windows Configurations

Federal Computer Week is reporting (here) that the office of management and budget will require all government agencies to adopt a standard windows configuration by February 1, 2008. The standard configuration was developed with the support of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the department of defense.

Defining the desired configuration state of assets within the computing environment, against a security baseline developed by organizations like NIST or the NSA, and then auditing the environment against this baseline to identify assets that deviate so that remediation actions can be taken, is a positive step towards moving IT Security from a purely reactive ad-hoc process to one that adopts pre-incident measures to eliminate attack vectors before they result in successful attack, it also supports continuous compliance initiatives.

For those looking for more information on security configuration management I have a write-up on the BigFix corporate blog (here) as well as automating continuous compliance (here) with links to the white papers.

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