MEGABYTE Act Q&A With ITAM Specialist Jason Christensen
The recent MEGABYTE Act of 2016 inspired us to sit down with ITAM expert, Jason Christensen, to get a better understanding of the impact of this bill.
Here is what he had to say.
1. What are your thoughts on the bill?
I feel that IT asset management (ITAM) should be a priority for government agencies. Not only a priority for the government but for most organizations. To control financial and security risk, proper ITAM solutions need to be in place.
2. Why is ITAM/ITSM so important for government agencies?
Government agencies spend an estimated six billion dollars every year on software.
Having controls in place to regulate the consumption and use of these licenses can be a huge source of ROI. ITAM is all about creating processes and policies to help optimize assets and make them work harder for you.
3. What kind of cost savings do you think they can expect?
It has been estimated that the Department of Homeland Security alone saved $181 million in software licensing in one recent year by implementing ITAM best practices.
It was also estimated that more than one billion dollars could be saved per year if all government agencies got on board. There is no doubt that tracking your software will curb IT spend.
By tracking software usage, government agencies can gain visibility needed for accurate purchasing, enable them with contract negotiation, and reduce non-compliance. Tracking usage will also allow the government to reclaim software licenses not in use saving valuable resources.
4. What does this bill mean for the future of government IT security?
You might not realize it at first, but your IT asset management strategy could be your best data security resource. Tracking the lifecycle of you hardware and software from purchase through allocation and usage and eventually to disposal ensures your assets are secure.
Like any security expert knows, you can only secure the assets you know about. Government agencies would see the same benefits any organization would see with security when it comes to implementing an ITAM solution. Having visibility into what assets they have, where they are, and how they are performing can tell you a lot about the security status.
5. Should an ITAM solution be required for more companies?
Why or why not? Yes, ITAM should definitely be implemented by more organizations. There is proof positive that tracking your assets works to reduce IT spend and increase the security of your assets.
Legislation is becoming more critical to ITAM strategies. As we see more regulations put in place, organizations need to be aware that they need to maintain compliance.
Not only do these laws secure the government and other organizations from financial and security risk, they also protect taxpayer’s money and sensitive information from mishandling.