Department of Defense Funds Reprogrammed for COVID-19 Response IT Requirements

Published: June 23, 2020

Federal Market AnalysisARMYCloud ComputingCoronavirus (COVID-19) PandemicDEFENSE HUMAN RESOURCES ACTIVITY (DEFENSE)DISADLADTRAForecasts and SpendingHardwareInformation TechnologyNetwork ServicesOperations and Maintenance (O&M)Spending Trends

DOD reprogrammed $200M in Operations and Maintenance funding to meet IT requirements related to COVID-19 response.

Key Takeaways

  • DOD reprogrammed $200M in Operations and Maintenance funding for IT requirements at Army and several Defense Agencies.
  • Army received $59.7M of reprogrammed funds, while DISA received $52.2M.
  • Army and multiple Defense Agencies purchased laptops, mobile devices, virtual private network, and virtual desktop infrastructure capabilities.
  • Some reprogrammed funding went to accelerate cloud migration at Army and the Defense Technical Information Center.

Back when the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act passed in March 2020, it contained an appropriation for Department of Defense Operations and Maintenance (O&M) “to prevent, prepare for, or respond to the coronavirus.” DOD subsequently used the authority granted to it to reprogram $200M from its Defense-Wide O&M account to meet IT requirements at the Army and  multiple Defense Agencies. Air Force received reprogrammed funds as well, but these will be covered in a separate post by Deltek’s Federal Market Analysis team. The funds reprogrammed to the Army and Defense Agencies are shown in the chart below.

According to the DOD Comptroller, these funds targeted improvements in the department’s telework and network capabilities to accommodate tenfold growth in the number of active duty and civilian personnel suddenly working from home during the pandemic. An estimated 95,000 DOD personnel telework under normal circumstances, but by the third week of April that number had ballooned to 970,000. This exponential growth forced the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) to increase its network capacity to 300 gigabits per second (an increase of 556%). Additionally, cyber attacks on teleworkers ramped up, resulting in DOD blocking 700,000 suspicious COVID-19 emails since the outbreak began.

Specific details on the accounts funded and requirements met are as follows:

Army Investments

  • Initiate the migration of 140,000 users to Impact Level 5 Microsoft Office365 collaboration capabilities.
  • Provide additional pay for 2,000 IT personnel for Army Network Enterprise Centers and Regional Cyber Centers.
  • Procure 200,000 Common Access Card readers and associated peripherals.
  • Accelerate Army’s Bring Your Own Device pilot.
  • Increase virtual private network capabilities.
  • Expand U.S. European Command and U.S. Africa Command virtual desktop infrastructure for 4,600 users.
  • Procure 269 classified mobile devices for U.S. Southern Command.

Defense Agency Investments

  • Increase email storage capacity (DISA).
  • Increase Defense Collaboration Services capacity, engineering, and service desk support (DISA).
  • Purchase classified mobile devices, laptops/desktops, and associated peripherals for 42,000 Joint Service Provider users (DISA).
  • Procure firewall surge capability for Defense Threat Reduction Agency.
  • Fund 8,320 labor hours and procure 145 laptops and peripherals in support of telework at the Defense Logistics Agency.
  • Enhance remote connectivity, remote continuity of operations, and accelerated cloud migration for the Defense Technical Information Center.
  • Procure laptops, portable electronic devices, virtual desktop infrastructure, and associated services for the Defense Technology Security Administration, the DOD Education Activity, and the Defense Human Resource Agency.