How to Infiltrate the Government Security Market

Published: May 7, 2014

Every year, the Security Industry Association (SIA) hosts its SIA Government Summit, a two-day conference in Washington, D.C., where security industry executives meet federal officials and explore the manner and substance of government business opportunities.

This year’s Summit is June 3-4 at the W Hotel near the White House, where SIA will present a number of panels.

Often moderated by top representatives of SIA member companies, these panels represent great opportunities for integrators and other businesses to interact with government officials.

The first of the panels will explore industry perspectives on the government marketplace and future directions. Another will examine views on relationships between Congress, federal agencies and the security industry to include recent policy developments and contributions from security solutions providers.

In a subsequent session, representatives of state and local governments will cover emerging security trends, policies being debated in state legislatures and budget allocations for security programs. And then SIA acquisition experts Lynn de Seve and Shene Commodore will discuss tips on contracting with the government, focusing on business collaboration, benefits and challenges of the GSA supply schedules program, vehicles for contracting with state and local governments, and the importance of keeping your eye on evolving federal regulations.

Related White Paper: The Unpredictable Stability of Government Integration

The SIA Government Summit will spend a considerable amount of time looking at how government agencies are using technology and approaching challenges such as cybersecurity. SIA member John Convy will lead a session that looks at the convergence of physical and logical security.

SIA will welcome the Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to discuss its research and development needs and how the industry can help. Last year, SIA signed a memorandum of understanding with the DHS S&T Directorate, striking an agreement to work together toward furthering research, product development, commercialization and economic development. SIA will assist DHS by communicating publicly available information on DHS capability gaps, technology requirements and outreach opportunities to its members in order to increase awareness of DHS into the private sector.

According to the memorandum, “DHS’ commitment to providing state-of-the-art technological capabilities to its operating components and the nation’s first responders requires that it maintains awareness of cutting-edge advancements in the electronics industry. As such, DHS will work with SIA to bring together DHS employees, first responders, end users and private-sector personnel in an online and/or face-to-face environment to exchange information and facilitate technical discussions on common goals and achievable objectives.”

Finally, the SIA Government Summit will present a panel on legislation that would again set requirements for DHS to implement a national biometric exit system for foreign visitors, a vitally important national security measure called for by the 9/11 Commission. The matching of biometric data allows identity confirmation for departing travelers not possible through checking travel documents and matching biographic information. Robert Horton of MorphoTrak will moderate this panel, bringing years of experience and insight into biometric identifiers such as fingerprints, iris and other features into perspective.

SIA already announced the keynote speaker for its Public Policy Dinner on June 3 as Chuck Todd, NBC News political director and chief White House correspondent, who is certain to provide insights into political developments surrounding the midterm elections and other matters. The group will be adding other keynote speakers to the program, including members of Congress, federal and state officials, and subject matter experts as the Summit draws closer.

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