In an era marked by escalating cybersecurity threats, companies within the Defense Industrial Base (DIB) find themselves at a critical juncture. With approximately 80,000 entities poised for substantial IT system enhancements to adhere to DFARS 7012 and CMMC standards, the emphasis largely remains on compliance. This perspective, however, often overshadows the fundamental purpose of these standards—protecting Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI). It is crucial to acknowledge that compliance, while necessary, does not equate to security.

The Pitfalls of Compliance-Driven Security in Legacy Systems

While modernizing cybersecurity strategies is essential, it is equally important to integrate robust practices like the Zero Trust model and end-to-end encryption, as recommended by the NSA. Legacy systems in the DIB, despite being modified for compliance, frequently maintain inherent vulnerabilities. These systems rely on outdated perimeter defenses that were once sufficient but now fall short against sophisticated cyber threats. The NSA, in its February 2021 paper, criticized this method, highlighting that traditional perimeter-based defenses cannot meet today’s cybersecurity demands. This outdated approach not only fails against modern adversaries but also fosters a false sense of security by merely meeting minimal compliance standards.

NSA’s Nine-Point Security Guidance and the ITAR Carveout

The NSA’s nine-point guidance, issued in response to the pandemic, delineates secure practices for selecting collaboration services. Key recommendations include end-to-end encryption, multi-factor authentication, and adherence to FedRAMP standards for cloud services. This guidance provides a concrete cybersecurity framework for assessing IT solutions and should be a benchmark for DIB companies. Additionally, the ITAR compliance regulation 120.54 integrates these NSA-recommended practices by mandating end-to-end encryption to protect CUI, thereby enhancing cybersecurity while streamlining compliance.

PreVeil: A Case Study in Balancing Compliance and Security

PreVeil’s solutions exemplify the synergy between compliance and robust cybersecurity. Their end-to-end encrypted email and file-sharing services, along with comprehensive compliance documentation, not only ease the compliance burden but also secure CUI with cutting-edge cybersecurity technologies. This illustrates the ideal approach to protecting sensitive information effectively.


As DIB entities progress with system upgrades, distinguishing between mere compliance and genuine security is vital. By advocating for and implementing NSA-recommended security measures, the DoD can ensure that compliance investments also significantly enhance the DIB’s security posture. This strategy safeguards against both current and future cyber threats, ensuring that the efforts and investments of DIB companies lead to a truly secure and resilient infrastructure. Therefore, choosing platforms like PreVeil that align with these practices is not merely a compliance measure—it’s a cybersecurity imperative.

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