- For a building as large as the Pentagon, installing wireless internet was a huge project. Beyond just the size of the building, officials took some convincing to allay security concerns they had about broadcasting information using Wi-Fi, Network World reports.
- Brendan DeBow, a Defense Engineering, Inc. program manager, said it took two years to put in just 68 access points across the 6.5 million square-foot space. The project, which began in 2010, is now complete with 1,500 installed access points, according to the report.
- One of the reasons the infrastructure upgrade took so long was because of the security requirements the Pentagon had. DeBow said the system had four or five different levels of service capabilities as well as four different kinds of authentication protocols.
Not only was the evolution of technology a challenge since the project began in 2010 and did not reach fruition until this year, but Defense Engineering also faced resistance to the technology from risk-adverse defense department personnel. But in this case, moving forward without Wi-Fi was not an option.
The project is a good example of how installing infrastructure tech like Wi-Fi can actually present less risk than not installing it. Because mobile technology and smart phones are now standard, wireless technology was going to be in use at the Pentagon anyway. By installing their own secure Wi-Fi system, the Pentagon could at least control its use.
And just because an organization has security concerns does not mean they should avoid modernization. Instead, it is up to business leaders to understand the risk they are potentially introducing to their environment and the necessary precautions they need to take to mitigate risk.