Report: Post-Attack IT Replacement to Cost $75 Million

The federal government will need to spend more than $75 million on replacement information technology hardware and services as a result of the Sept. 11 attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center, according to a study by market research firm Input Inc.

That is separate from the $145 million contract the Pentagon has already awarded to repair the damage to the building.

Input of Chantilly, Va., has prepared a white paper outlining its evaluation of the impact the terrorist attacks have had on the government, and identifying the steps the government must take to recover.

According to Input, there are three broad phases the government must pursue in response to the attacks: recovery, mitigation and retribution.

"First and foremost, the federal government must recover from the physical (and psychological) damage of the attacks," the report said. "The government must then take steps to ensure that similar attacks never happen again. Finally, the government will seek to punish those individuals, groups [and] countries that bear responsibility for the attacks."

The bulk of replacement IT equipment and services will be acquired through existing General Services Administration schedules and contracts, Input predicted.

One side effect of the attacks is the probable slowdown on procurements that were already in the works but not yet completed. Many procurement officers and other professionals have been redirected to emergency activities, putting aside their existing responsibilities.

Federal agencies are likely to assess their efforts in physical and cybersecurity, Input said. Coordinating their efforts may fall to the new Office for Homeland Security, which will also be responsible for data gathering and from about 40 agencies to support domestic security functions.

"It is an unfortunate reflection of the harsh reality of life that retribution is a necessary form of mitigation through deterrence," the report concluded, predicting retribution will be pursued via two distinct channels.

The first is pursuing intelligence to determine the individuals, organizations and possible countries responsible for the attacks; locate them,;and exploit their vulnerabilities, such as President Bush's announced freeze on financial assets. The second is a military response.

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