AT&T joins DHS's Einstein firewall

AT&T, after initially resisting the Department of Homeland Security's $1 billion firewall program, has signed on to provide cyberprotection to government agencies through DHS’s Einstein program.
AT&T, after initially resisting the Department of Homeland Security's $1 billion firewall program, has signed on to provide cyberprotection to government agencies through DHS’s Einstein program.

AT&T, after initially resisting the Department of Homeland Security's $1 billion firewall Einstein 3 Accelerated program, has signed on to provide cyberprotection to government agencies through the initiative.

Chris Smith, vice president of technology for AT&T Government Solutions, wrote in a blog post Wednesday that the telecom company will provide intrusion protection for federal civilian agencies through Einstein 3 Accelerated (E3A). AT&T expects its initial E3A countermeasures “to help protect government data and .gov websites against cyber-attack” will be ready this year.

E3A is the latest rendition to the DHS program, which was further updated up to prevent cyber attacks like the Office of Personnel Management data breach in June.

AT&T originally called the cyberprotection program a “liability.” A former DHS official said AT&T was initially resistant to signing on to the program without receiving 2511 liability protection from DHS, according to Federal Times.

AT&T's two largest competitors, Verizon and CenturyLink, have involved in the Einstein program for several years.

DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson has encouraged federal agencies to make at least some of the E3A protections available for all federal civilian departments and agencies by the end of 2015.

Last month, Raytheon signed a $1 billion contract to continue to operate and maintain the Einstein program for DHS for the next five years.

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