Splunk, Big Data and Healthcare Analytics in the Federal Government – Part 3 DHMSM

Welcome to part three of my three-part blog on the ascending role of big data for healthcare analytics in the federal government. In this final part of the series we look at DHMSM, a very large project to find efficiency and insight in near real time. Part one and part two can be found here and here.

DHMSM and the problem to be addressed

Department of Defense Healthcare Management System Modernization (DHMSM) Program is administering an RFP for a potential $11B effort which calls for the modernization the Department of Defense healthcare system by uniting multiple legacy healthcare systems and data stores, developed over decades. I’ve reviewed most of the RFP consisting over 20 attachments which also calls for …

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The Role of Big Data in Improving the Quality and Efficiency of Healthcare – Part 2 RMADA

In part two of the healthcare analytics topic we take a look at the RMADA RFP.

It is only through measurement that the quality of healthcare delivered can be improved and its delivery made more efficient. The Federal government needs to facilitate the highest quality at the lowest cost. Medicare, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) all involve the use of Federal dollars and the Center for Medicare Services (CMS) has access to a massive amount of data the that could be used for planning, analysis, implementation, and rapid cycle evaluation of innovation and determine program effectiveness.

The purpose of the RMADA RFP, (contract awarded July 2014) is to solicit bids to, “…develop a Research, Measurement, Assessment, …

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Splunk, Big Data and Healthcare Analytics in the Federal Government – Part 1 The Veterans Administration

There have been three interesting events that have occurred recently in the area of healthcare analytics that deserve our attention:

  • The passage through the US House and Senate of the Veterans Access to Care through Choice, Accountability, and Transparency Act;
  • The development of a government IDIQ (indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity) contract to develop a Research, Measurement, Assessment, Design, and Analysis (RMADA) that will provide analytic support and technical assistance for models and demonstration programs that are derived under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) and;
  • Department of Defense Healthcare Management System Modernization (DHMSM) Program procurement task orders.

These three activities all highlight the need for a big data solution in healthcare that can provide accountability, …

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Deploying Splunk Securely with Ansible Config Management – Part 1

Intro

More times than not I have seen corporations struggle with config management and it is key for concise mitigation and remediation plan. Interfacing with a variety of Splunk customers the corporations whom do implement a config management system usually have a different tactic on how to manage Splunk while doing it in a secure fashion. In this series of blog posts which will hopefully walk you through a simple deployment of Ansible all the way to the most complex use-cases I have seen. I will first be covering how Ansible can be leverage to manage a simple Splunk deployment on your own hosts. Part 2 we will cover how this can be done in a larger scale with EC2 …

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Generating Elliptical Curve Certs for Splunk

Intro

Very often we get questions about generating stronger Cert/Keys for Splunk. Specifically from users who run a vulnerability scanner against their Splunk instance. By default, Splunk ships with a 1024 bit strength RSA Cert. This is the same certificate authority cert across all Splunk binaries. Splunk recommends customers use their own CA and cert/key pair in the securing Splunk documentation. It is good practice to sign certs by your own CA.

I recommend an EC (Elliptical Curve) key/pair. For more about EC have a look here. Here are a few pros and cons of using EC certs:

Pros

  • Perfect Forwarding Secrecy (PFS) support
  • Shorter Keys which are as Strong as RSA key but are easier on the
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Sharing the Splunk Cloud Love

                                                                   Exhibit A

                                                                   Exhibit B

 

Tough to beat a reference like that!

However, I’m pleased to say that for Splunk Cloud…we just came pretty close. :-)

First this blog post by Cesar-Lopez Nataren of Mindtouch, titled “Mindtouch’s Path to Splunk Cloud Enlightenment.”  Some nuggets:

  • “The user interface for tweaking the dashboards was so phenomenally
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Cisco Security Suite 3.0.3 now includes Cisco Sourcefire

The Cisco Security Suite app continues to get updated for Splunk 6.x.  The latest addition is support for Cisco Sourcefire.  Information from your eStreamer server (e.g. Defense Center) is visualized including:

  • Intrusion events
  • Sensor information
  • Policy information
  • Hosts
  • Flow summaries
  • File / Malware events
  • Correlation events

So now, the Cisco Security Suite supports:

  • Cisco ASA and PIX firewall appliances, the FWSM firewall services module
  • WSA web security appliance
  • Cisco IronPort Email Security Appliance (ESA)
  • Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE)
  • Cisco Sourcefire

Also, with each release, we incorporate more feedback about documentation.  Documentation can be found within the Cisco Security Suite app itself and on the Documentation tab on http://apps.splunk.com/app/525/.

Be sure to check out Splunk Answers as well for community …

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Cisco Security Suite 3.0.2 now includes Cisco IronPort Email Security Appliance (ESA) Data

The Cisco Security Suite app continues to get updated for Splunk 6.x.  The latest addition is support to Cisco IronPort Email Security Appliance (ESA).  A new add-on has been published that provides Common Information Model compliant field extractions and tags for data from Cisco ESA.  So now, the Cisco Security Suite supports:

  • Cisco ASA and PIX firewall appliances, the FWSM firewall services module
  • WSA web security appliance
  • Cisco IronPort Email Security Appliance (ESA)
  • Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE)

Also, with each release, we incorporate more feedback about documentation.  So, in addition to documentation found within the Cisco Security Suite app itself, a subset of “getting started” documentation has been published under the Documentation tab on http://apps.splunk.com/app/525/.

 

Stay tuned, there …

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Cisco Security Suite 3.0.1 – Now with ISE

The Cisco Security Suite was recently updated to work with Splunk 6.  As mentioned in the previous release, one release is not enough to get all the Cisco security related information integrated into the suite.  With version 3.0.1 of the Cisco Security Suite, Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) has been added.  Over 20 ISE-related dashboards have been integrated into the suite.

Cisco with ISE

 

 

ISE is really powerful and adds a lot of additional data that can be correlated.  For instance, say you have an IP address from somewhere in your environment.  ISE can tell you which user is using that IP, what type of device the user is using, the posture of the device, and much more.  Therefore, in …

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Introducing the Cisco Security Suite for Splunk 6

I know.  I normally blog about Microsoft stuff.  Recently, however, I’ve been helping out on another project – updating the Cisco Security Suite to be compatible with Splunk 6.  The Cisco Security Suite is the most downloaded app on Splunkbase behind the *Nix and Windows apps and exposes Cisco specific information about your Cisco specific security devices.

We had many aims for this project, aside from just upgrading everything to work with Splunk 6.  We wanted it to use the Technology Add-ons that you may already have from a deployment of Enterprise Security.  If you were considering an upgrade to Enterprise Security in the future (and you should – it’s awesome), then we wanted the data you have already …

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