Three land NSA development work

Three companies each won $10 million contracts from the National Security Agency to help develop an inline encryption device for high-speed classified networks.

The winning companies were General Dynamics Corp., Falls Church, Va.; L-3 Communications Corp., New York; and ViaSat Inc., Carlsbad, Calif.

The NSA device will encrypt sensitive information transmitted over the Internet and other Internet protocol-based networks. The resulting Gigabit Ethernet Encryptors will be compliant with the NSA's High-Assurance IP Encryption standards, which were set in place to ensure interoperability with future generations of IP encryptors developed for the government.

Each company will build a prototype of the device and will compete to build production units, said Bruce Rowe, a spokesman for ViaSat.

The NSA plans for the encryptor to be a part of the Global Grid Program, the Defense Department network for transmitting classified information using IP. All three companies plan to fold the work into commercial products.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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