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The Automated Future of FedRAMP - A Deep Dive Into the FedRAMP Roadmap Episode 5

Note: This is episode 5 of a five-part series on the Future of FedRAMP. See the links below for other episodes.

Welcome back to our final episode of our series delving into the strategic goals outlined in the recently released FedRAMP Roadmap. Today, we delve into the fourth and last objective, which focuses on enhancing the efficacy of the program through the implementation of automated mechanisms and advanced operations.

Objective 4: Automation and Efficiency

This fourth objective acknowledges the need to reduce manual processes to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the program. The roadmap is ambitious, targeting to streamline operations and introduce metrics to keep track of whether or not the objectives are being achieved.

A significant aspect of this is the reduction in time to become FedRAMP ready. With the help of automated tools and experienced providers like InfusionPoints, the time to prepare has been considerably reduced. Too much of the remainder of the timeline lies in the review process, making the overall timeframes unpredictable. In order to improve this, key metrics need to be established.

There also needs to be a focus on establishing low review routes for known agencies that have robust review processes in place, like the DoD. This will pave the way for reciprocity and make the process more attractive to service providers who want to address the broader public sector marketplace.

The Role of Technology

A key point of discussion is the development of the technology platform for the FedRAMP program providing the tools that will enable agencies, CSPs, and 3PAOs to support OSCAL outputs and inputs. With the technology-first approach, we can automate certain tasks, help eliminate human error, and ultimately make the FedRAMP authorization process more efficient.

The near future might see the use of AI tools to help interpret complex regulatory language and assist with streamlining the review process. Taken a step further, the SSP could be written with AI assistance, making it more accurate and consistent. As AI progresses, we may see it writing as well as reading and interpreting for us!

The goal hopes to yield benefits to all stakeholders. Streamlining the process, making operations efficient, reducing the review time, and subsequently costs, will lead to a more rapid adoption of cloud.

The roadmap timeline is aggressive so agreements on key aspects need to be reached reached sooner than later.  In particular, priority should be given to aspects such as establishing a larger review board and having the JAB connect process back on track. This has begun to take shape in the last few weeks based on the FSCAC changes, launch of the FedRAMP Board, and the launch of the Technical Advisory Group (TAG).

Conclusion

We’ve been working on the front lines of the FedRAMP process for over a decade, advocating for improvements and changes to better serve our customers and the nation’s cybersecurity. The roadmap to a more streamlined and optimized future for FedRAMP is promising indeed, embracing a tech-first and automation-driven approach.

The FedRAMP PMO and OMB have made great strides with the FedRAMP roadmap. While there are still adjustments to be made, the direction of the program is exciting. It opens up numerous possibilities for further innovation in utilizing technology in more meaningful ways and improving the nation's cybersecurity.