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AFWERX is an extension of the SBIR program within the U.S. Air Force that fosters innovation and collaboration between the military, industry, and academia to develop transformative technologies for national security. AFWERX’s main function is to provide research and development funding and resources for small businesses. Second Front Systems actively engages with AFWERX to explore new opportunities for integrating innovative technologies into the national security ecosystem.


Agile is a dynamic and iterative software development methodology that prioritizes adaptability, collaboration, and continuous customer feedback to deliver high-quality software in incremental stages. It stands in contrast to traditional, linear development approaches by promoting flexibility and responsiveness to changing requirements and market conditions. Agile development divides project timelines into smaller, manageable segments known as "sprints" or "iterations," each of which results in a potentially shippable product increment. Agile teams foster close collaboration among developers, stakeholders, and end-users, enabling rapid adjustments and improvements based on real-time feedback, ultimately delivering software that aligns closely with customer needs and expectations. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, serves as a pivotal enabler of agile practices for its users. This DevSecOps platform-as-a-service (PaaS) is strategically designed to streamline the entire software development lifecycle, from initial design to deployment, while fostering a culture of flexibility and responsiveness that aligns perfectly with agile methodologies.

Authority to Operate (ATO)

An Authority to Operate (ATO) is formal authorization given by the Department of Defense (DoD) to a system, network, or application, indicating that it meets specific security and compliance requirements and is allowed to operate within the DoD environment.

Through Game Warden's unique approach, the platform expedites the ATO process for commercial applications seeking to operate within the DoD environment. By enabling commercial applications to inherit security controls from the platform and automate many tasks, Game Warden streamlines the ATO timeline allowing them to deliver their software to the government more efficiently.

Classification of the Work

The process of categorizing the type and sensitivity of the work being performed or the information being handled to determine the appropriate security measures and controls needed to protect it. Second Front Systems’ Game Warden supports commercial applications across multiple security classifications.

Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD)

CI/CD represents a modern software development and deployment practice aimed at streamlining the development process and ensuring the efficient, high-quality delivery of software applications. Continuous integration involves the automation of code integration from individual developers into a shared code repository multiple times a day. Each integration triggers automated tests to identify any code integration issues, allowing teams to catch and rectify problems early in the development cycle. This practice promotes collaboration, minimizes integration challenges, and enhances code stability. Continuous delivery builds upon continuous integration by automating the entire deployment process. It ensures that code changes that pass continuous integration tests are automatically deployed to production or staging environments, making new features and updates readily available for testing or release to end-users. Continuous delivery minimizes manual intervention, accelerates software delivery, and reduces the risk of deployment errors. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, seamlessly integrates CI/CD pipelines into its DevSecOps framework, enhancing the software development and deployment process for defense software.

Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI)

Controlled Unclassified Information denotes a category of sensitive data that is unclassified but holds significant value and importance, requiring special protective measures as mandated by federal regulations and statutes. CUI encompasses a wide range of information types, including financial data, intellectual property, personally identifiable information (PII), and other sensitive details that, while not classified as national security secrets, demand safeguarding due to their sensitivity and potential impact on national interests and security. Second Front Systems' Game Warden platform secures and protects CUI for DoD networks. Game Warden's comprehensive security framework implements a stringent set of security controls designed specifically to safeguard CUI and other sensitive data.

Defense Industrial Base

The Defense Industrial Base, often referred to as the DIB, encompasses a diverse range of companies, organizations, and entities that play a crucial role in supporting the U.S. Department of Defense. These entities provide various goods and services, including technology, manufacturing, logistics, and research, to contribute to the nation's defense capabilities. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, serves as a valuable asset for DIB companies by facilitating compliance and security in the delivery of software to the DoD. It streamlines the process of ensuring that software solutions developed by DIB companies meet the stringent cybersecurity and compliance requirements of the Department. This not only enhances the ability of DIB companies to work with the DoD but also reinforces the security of the entire defense supply chain.

Department of Defense Information Network (DoDIN)

DoDIN is the comprehensive global information infrastructure that underpins and supports the operations of the U.S. Department of Defense. It encompasses a vast network of interconnected systems, devices, and communication channels that facilitate secure information exchange and collaboration among DoD personnel and partners. Game Warden operates seamlessly within the DoDIN, functioning as a specialized platform that ensures the secure and compliant delivery of software solutions within the DoD's extensive network infrastructure.

Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP)

FedRAMP is a government-wide program that offers a standardized and risk-based approach for assessing and authorizing cloud service providers to be used by federal agencies. The program's objective is to ensure that cloud service offerings meet stringent security and compliance requirements as defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Risk Management Framework (NIST RMF) and the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).

Impact Levels (IL)

Impact Levels are part of a classification system used by the DoD to categorize the sensitivity of information stored or processed in the cloud and the potential impact of an event that results in the loss of confidentiality, integrity, or availability of that information.

The DoD CC SRG defines specific security characteristics for each Impact Level:
- IL2: Includes Public or Non-Critical Mission Information. - IL4: Includes Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI), such as For Official Use Only (FOUO), Personally Identifiable Information (PII), and Personal Health Information (PHI), Non-Critical Mission Information, and Non-National Security Systems (NSS). - IL5: Includes higher sensitivity CUI, Mission Critical Information, and NSS. IL5 is between IL4 and IL6 but distinct for its inclusion of NSS. - IL6: Includes information systems and information classified SECRET.

Second Front Systems’ Game Warden offers secure cloud hosting environments for commercial applications at Impact Levels 2, 4, and 5.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

Infrastructure-as-a-Service is a cloud computing model that offers users virtualized computing resources delivered over the internet. These resources encompass a comprehensive suite of infrastructure components, including virtual servers, storage, networking, and associated hardware resources. IaaS empowers users to create, configure, and manage their entire IT infrastructure, abstracting the complexities of physical hardware management. With IaaS, organizations can scale their infrastructure up or down as needed, optimize resource allocation, and focus on deploying applications and services without the burdens of hardware procurement, maintenance, and upkeep. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, leverages the power of Infrastructure-as-a-Service, including Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud, to establish a secure and compliant hosting environment tailored to the needs of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).

Joint Interoperability Test Command (JITC)

JITC is a specialized testing and certification organization operating within the U.S. Department of Defense. Its primary mission is to ensure the interoperability and security of communication and information systems used by the DoD. JITC conducts rigorous testing and evaluation processes to verify that these systems can function effectively and securely within the complex and interconnected DoD environment.

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Multi-Factor Authentication, or MFA, is a robust security method that necessitates users to provide two or more forms of authentication to gain access to a system or application. It adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to confirm their identity using something they know (e.g., a password) and something they possess (e.g., a mobile device). Game Warden prioritizes the security of its platform by implementing MFA. This security measure enhances the protection against unauthorized access and potential breaches. By requiring multiple forms of authentication, Game Warden ensures that only authorized individuals can access its platform, safeguarding the sensitive information and software it facilitates for the DoD.

National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)

The National Defense Authorization Act, commonly referred to as NDAA, is a vital annual federal law enacted by the U.S. Congress. It serves as the legislative framework that outlines the budgetary allocations and expenditures for the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). The NDAA is a comprehensive document that not only allocates funding but also contains provisions that govern various aspects of national defense, including military operations, procurement, personnel policies, and cybersecurity initiatives. It plays a pivotal role in shaping the strategic direction and priorities of the DoD, ensuring it has the necessary resources and authorities to fulfill its mission.

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is an agency that develops and publishes cybersecurity standards and guidelines, including those used by the DoD for information security and risk management. Second Front Systems aligns with NIST standards to ensure that Game Warden meets the highest cybersecurity and risk management practices.

National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Risk Management Framework (NIST RMF)

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is an agency that develops and publishes cybersecurity standards and guidelines, including those used by the DoD for information security and risk management. Second Front Systems aligns with NIST standards to ensure that Game Warden meets the highest cybersecurity and risk management practices.

Other Transaction Authority (OTA)

The Other Transaction Authority (OTA) is a term used to refer to the authority of the Department of Defense (DoD) to carry out certain prototypes, research, and production projects. OT authorities were created to allow the DoD to adopt business practices that align with commercial industry standards and best practices in its award instruments. Under the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Section 845, the DoD has permanent authority to award OTs for Research, Prototype, and Production Purposes.

Other Transactions (OTs) are a procurement authority used by federal agencies, including the Department of Defense (DoD), to enter into agreements with non-traditional defense contractors, such as small businesses, research institutions, and nonprofit organizations. OTs provide a more flexible and streamlined approach to acquisitions, allowing the government to bypass certain Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requirements typically associated with traditional procurement contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements.

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

Platform-as-a-Service is a cloud computing model that offers developers a comprehensive platform for creating, deploying, and managing software applications. PaaS abstracts the complexities of infrastructure management, allowing developers to focus primarily on the coding and development aspects of their applications. This cloud-based platform provides a wide range of tools, services, and resources that facilitate the entire application development lifecycle, from initial design and coding to deployment, scaling, and ongoing maintenance. PaaS environments empower developers with the agility and scalability required to innovate and deliver applications quickly and efficiently. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, is an example of a DevSecOps Platform-as-a-Service. Game Warden is engineered to streamline the intricate processes involved in software delivery for U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) networks.

Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR)

The Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) is a federal program that encourages small businesses to engage in research and development for solutions that could help the government and have potential for commercialization. Second Front Systems’ Game Warden pairs excellently with the SBIR program, providing a streamlined pathway to accreditation at the end of the SBIR process for software projects.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

SaaS represents a prominent cloud computing model where software applications are centrally hosted and provided to users via the internet on a subscription-based model. In this approach, users access and utilize software applications remotely, typically through web browsers, without the need for traditional on-premises installations or extensive local maintenance. SaaS offers a range of advantages, including scalability, accessibility from various devices and locations, automatic updates, and cost efficiency, making it a favored choice for businesses and organizations seeking streamlined and flexible software solutions. Game Warden, developed by Second Front Systems, serves as a pivotal enabler in the context of SaaS delivery within U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) networks. Game Warden is designed for accelerating the deployment of SaaS applications onto these networks, leveraging its capabilities to facilitate the rapid adoption of cloud-based software solutions by DoD entities.

Valley of Death

The term "Valley of Death" is commonly used in the realm of government procurement and technology development. It describes the significant challenge that companies and organizations encounter when transitioning from the research and development (R&D) phase of a project to the production and deployment phase. This transition is often marked by a gap or delay in funding, resources, and support, which can impede the progress and success of innovative projects. Companies navigating the Valley of Death may struggle to secure the necessary investments and partnerships to move from the conceptual or experimental stage to full-scale production and deployment. The Game Warden platform, developed by Second Front Systems, plays a vital role in bridging the Valley of Death within the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) software development landscape.

Zero Trust

A Zero Trust refers to a cybersecurity approach that assumes no trust by default, requiring continuous verification and authentication of users, devices, and applications before granting access to resources. Second Front Systems follows the Zero Trust model to provide a robust and secure environment for government entities and commercial companies leveraging Game Warden, ensuring only authorized users and applications have access to sensitive data.

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