During the NASCIO Midyear Conference in April, organizers invited a handful of CIOs to give a five minute download  on some of the items on the Top Ten policy and technology priorities for state government leaders.

No. 10 on the NASCIO list, the digital divide is a significant problem for the residents of Mississippi, said Craig Orgeron, the state’s CIO.

“In a state like Mississippi, which has [a population where] 34 percent lack access to broadband, the digital road ahead is going to be very different than the road we’ve been on,” he said.

One consequence is that the state has switched from a desktop-first to a mobile-first strategy. So far, there have been 200,000 downloads of state-specific applications. But it’s slow going.

“It’s tough from a budget perspective … We think public-private partnerships are the way to go, [but] we have to have governance.” The state legislature has established an oversight committee and delegated authority to statewide elected officials, Orgeron said, with meetings posted online.

Data management and analytics was No. 7 on the list. David Behen, Michigan’s CIO, said his office has been looking at how to use data to improve state agencies’ customer service since 2011.

“Mobile-first, big data and cybersecurity – oh, and throw in the cloud. Those were the pieces we were going to pull together,” Behen said. “What came out of this is MiPage, a personal concierge for government services in Michigan.”

MiPage offers residents a single entry point, regardless of the device they’re using, based on a log-in screen. “We had to put in a log-in to authenticate” people in order to access the right databases, he said. Then it has “personalized information and applications for you.”

Behen said his agency would be releasing a new RFP in a few weeks, for a Michigan cyber threat analytics center. “Take our past cyber threat data, our current data, and put out predictive analytics to identify what attacks we might face. That has to be a public-private partnership, he said.”

The Commonwealth of Virginia under Gov. Terry McAuliffe has been in the forefront of states’ efforts to address NASCIO’s No. 1 issue, cyber security and risk management.

State systems get attacked every three seconds, said Nelson Moe, Virginia’s CIO. “The key in Virginia is to be prepared. Also to track cyber trends [both] at a high level and tactically,” he said.

The cost to bad guys of developing new attacks is getting cheaper and cheaper. “Time, tide and technology wait for no one, especially in cyber space,” he said.

To this end, Moe shared, that state governors have embraced the seriousness of the cyber threat to state data and have drafted a 10 point security protocol.  This protocol will be ratified  at the National Governors Association meeting in June in Leesburg, Virginia.  With this level of support from the governor’s office state CIOs like Orgeron, Behen, and Moe will be empowered to embrace the data-driven revolution in IT and, in turn, be able to deliver more services, more effectively to citizens.

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