Yesterday, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released Memorandum M-22-18, implementing software supply chain security requirements that will have a significant impact on software companies and vendors in accordance with Executive Order 14028, Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity.  The Memorandum requires all federal agencies and their software suppliers to comply with the NIST Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF)NIST SP 800-­218, and the NIST Software Supply Chain Security Guidance whenever third-party software is used on government information systems or otherwise affects government information.  The term “software” includes firmware, operating systems, applications, and application services (e.g., cloud-based software), as well as products containing software.  It is critical to note that these requirements will apply whenever there is a major version update or new software that the government will be using. 

The Memorandum requires agencies to take the following actions:

  • within 90 days, agencies must inventory all software subject to the Memorandum;
  • within 120 days, agencies will have developed a process to communicate requirements to vendors and ensure that vendor attestation letters can be collected in a central agency system;
  • within 180 days, agencies must assess training needs and develop plans for the review and validation of attestation documents;
  • within 270 days for critical software and within 365 days for all others, agencies will require self-attestations from all software producers; and
  • as needed, obtain from software producers a Software Bill of Materials (SBOM) or other artifact(s) that demonstrate conformance to secure software development practices. 

To comply with the Memorandum, software producers must attest that they adhere to the NIST software supply chain frameworks and guidance.  In lieu of a self-attestation, software producers may also submit third-party assessments of compliance with the software security standards conducted by a certified FedRAMP assessor or an assessor approved by the agency.

Software producers or vendors providing software to the federal government should begin reviewing their security practices and their overall software development lifecycle immediately to ensure that they can attest to compliance with the applicable NIST standards in the very near future.   

For more information, please contact the professional(s) listed below, or your regular Crowell & Moring contact.

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Photo of Michael G. Gruden, CIPP/G Michael G. Gruden, CIPP/G

Michael G. Gruden is an associate in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office where he is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts and Privacy & Cybersecurity groups. He possesses real-world experience in the areas of federal procurement and data security, having worked…

Michael G. Gruden is an associate in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office where he is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts and Privacy & Cybersecurity groups. He possesses real-world experience in the areas of federal procurement and data security, having worked as a Contracting Officer at both the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the Information Technology, Research & Development, and Security sectors for nearly 15 years. Michael is a Certified Information Privacy Professional with a U.S. government concentration (CIPP/G). He is also a Registered Practitioner under the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) framework. Michael serves as vice-chair for the ABA Science & Technology Section’s Homeland Security Committee.

Photo of Evan D. Wolff Evan D. Wolff

Evan D. Wolff is a partner in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office, where he is co-chair of the firm’s Chambers USA-ranked Privacy & Cybersecurity Group and a member of the Government Contracts Group. Evan has a national reputation for his deep technical…

Evan D. Wolff is a partner in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office, where he is co-chair of the firm’s Chambers USA-ranked Privacy & Cybersecurity Group and a member of the Government Contracts Group. Evan has a national reputation for his deep technical background and understanding of complex cybersecurity legal and policy issues. Calling upon his experiences as a scientist, program manager, and lawyer, Evan takes an innovative approach to developing blended legal, technical, and governance mechanisms to prepare companies with rapid and comprehensive responses to rapidly evolving cybersecurity risks and threats. Evan has conducted training and incident simulations, developed response plans, led privileged investigations, and advised on hundreds of data breaches where he works closely with forensic investigators. Evan also counsels businesses on both domestic and international privacy compliance matters, including the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). He is also a Registered Practitioner under the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) framework.

Photo of Alexander Urbelis Alexander Urbelis

Alex Urbelis is a senior counsel in the New York office and a member of the Privacy & Cybersecurity Group. Alex has more than 20 years of experience in the information security community and has varied experience as a Chief Information Security Officer…

Alex Urbelis is a senior counsel in the New York office and a member of the Privacy & Cybersecurity Group. Alex has more than 20 years of experience in the information security community and has varied experience as a Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), Chief Compliance Officer, in-house counsel, and private practice litigator.

Alex has a unique skill set that has allowed him to create a bridge between the technical and legal side of cybersecurity. As a result, he is the primary architect of an exclusive DNS (Domain Name Search) monitoring and intelligence platform. Through this intel platform, Alex advises his clients on identified and early-stage indicators of cybersecurity threats and provides counsel on legal actions and technical defensive remedies to neutralize those threats. Alex tracks sophisticated cyber adversaries and advanced persistent threats (APTs) through his intel platform and, notably, detected a state-sponsored cyber intrusion attempt targeting the World Health Organization in March 2020. For combining legal and technical skill sets with public service, the Financial Times selected Alex as a finalist for its Innovative Lawyers awards for pandemic response in 2020.

Photo of Maida Oringher Lerner Maida Oringher Lerner

Maida Lerner is senior counsel in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office and a part of the firm’s Privacy & Cybersecurity, Government Contracts, and Environment & Natural Resources groups. Maida counsels a broad group of clients in a variety of sectors on cyber…

Maida Lerner is senior counsel in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office and a part of the firm’s Privacy & Cybersecurity, Government Contracts, and Environment & Natural Resources groups. Maida counsels a broad group of clients in a variety of sectors on cyber and physical security compliance and risk management, homeland security, and administrative matters, including trade associations and companies in the pipeline, transportation, government contracts, education, health care, and manufacturing sectors.