John Jolly’s 2013 Outlook:The Power of Big Data is No Longer a Secret

John Jolly, General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems

WashingtonExec 2013 Government Contracting Outlook Series:

The new year brings big changes for the Federal IT industry, and WashingtonExec is back with its Government Contracting Industry Outlook Series.

We are giving local executives the opportunity to share their thoughts on where they see our industry headed this year and beyond. Leaders were asked a series of questions focused on cloud computing, healthcare IT, defense, mobility, and more.

John Jolly is Vice President and General Manager of the Cyber Systems Division with General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems (GD AIS). He spoke with us about his predictions for 2013 where the issue of Big Data was concerned:

“What makes Big Data such an interesting topic is that it is not unique to government agencies; the commercial industry also has to deal with massive amounts of data. At General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, we are seeing a growing need for public-private partnerships that bring industry and government together to develop and evolve standards that support and facilitate the implementation of Big Data programs.

Government regulations have helped to drive this public-private collaboration. As agencies begin to adopt the standards set forth by the government, there will be gaps and that is where the private sector can come in and address those opportunities by developing new solutions and technologies.

Additionally, budgetary pressures and the appearance of powerful open source technologies to address Big Data are enabling new paradigms in enterprise storage and computing across both government and industry. My job is to ensure that we deliver innovative solutions designed to address customer needs.

The issue for customers becomes how to extract knowledge from large quantities of data and then use it to your advantage, providing a single picture – situational awareness. For example, near real-time analysis collected about the network is going to help agencies become more proactive in identifying targets and threats, instead of reacting to the threats once they have already been discovered. This helps agencies better understand where the vulnerabilities are, providing them with the ability to make better decisions. General Dynamics is developing ways to baseline the state of ‘what is normal’ in certain sensor networks and using that baseline to detect malfeasance. Machine learning and multi-sensor fusion and correlation is core to our work and our solutions.

The increasing dialogue around Big Data analytics and its ability to dramatically improve situational awareness will be a strong catalyst to encourage information sharing. Being able to use analytics to respond to complex problems in real-time is a game changer for any organization facing the constant influx of data. I’m optimistic that agencies will be more willing to share data because of the advances, such as cyber threat detection, that they can derive from Big Data analytics.

The promise of the power of Big Data is no longer a secret and it is quickly emerging as another enterprise asset that both the government and industry readily utilize to help them meet their mission requirements.”

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