Cybersecurity takes yet another slot on NASCIO’s Top Ten Priorities list for 2019

"Identity and Access Management" has debuted on the list as a top priority for state chief information officers.
The Number 10
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As state government becomes increasingly digital, CIOs are increasingly focusing on security. On Thursday, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers debuted “Identity and Access Management” as a new priority among state CIOs in its Top Ten Policy and Technology Priorities for 2019:

  1. Security and Risk Management
  2. Cloud Services
  3. Consolidation/Optimization
  4. Digital Government
  5. Broadband/Wireless Connectivity
  6. Budget, Cost Control, Fiscal Management
  7. Customer Relationship Management
  8. Data Management & Analytics
  9. Enterprise IT Governance
  10. Identity and Access Management

Cybersecurity is a primary concern for many state CIOs, as it has held onto the No. 1 spot on the top ten list since 2014. Identity and Access Management, or IAM, squarely fits into that area of focus as CIOs show an increasing level of concern over the security of citizen and government data.

“Enterprise IAM approaches and solutions are gaining more traction in the states and are essential for managing secure employee access and supporting digital government platforms for citizens,” NASCIO Executive Director Doug Robinson said in a press release.


The new 2019 report takes a peek at the priorities of 49 state CIOs moving into 2019 and reflects the shifting role of state CIOs to be more than a service provider as local governments are increasingly digitized and equipped with emerging technologies they struggle to manage without outside help.

“In addition to the duty to safeguard state systems and citizen information, increasing efficiency and fostering innovation are clearly indicated as key objectives for state CIOs in 2019,” James Collins, NASCIO president and chief information officer of Delaware, said in a press release.

To accommodate the digital transformation of government, Collins said CIOs are expanding partnerships with outside service providers. “Partnerships with state agencies and private IT companies are key ingredients for transitioning to NASCIO’s ‘CIO as Broker’ operating model,” Collins said.

Other changes

This year’s survey renews several long-standing trends, such as strengthening statewide connectivity and leveraging the power of data analytics, but several changing priorities were represented in the Top Ten as well.


This year, state CIOs did not prioritize sharing services, resources and infrastructure, after it secured the No. 6 spot on the 2018 list. Budget and cost control stayed on the list from 2018 but moved down one spot to No. 6 in 2019.

Conversely, Broadband/Wireless Connectivity moved up to No. 5 from No. 7 in 2018, and customer relationship management is back on the list at No. 7 after a three-year hiatus.

Agile and incremental software delivery, despite its prioritization in previous years, dropped off this year’s list.


Security topped the list at No. 1 for the fourth year in a row and has found its way onto the list by one name or another since the introduction of the survey in 2007.


All top 4 priorities remained the same from 2018.

Data management and enterprises IT held the same spots as they did in 2018 — No. 8 and 9, respectively.

Digital government also remains a top-ranking priority and is reflective of the increase in citizen expectations for how they want to do business with state government, according to NASCIO.

Given the consistency of the list from 2018 to 2019, the survey emphasizes the focus state CIOs have placed on government digitization and the associated responsibility to strengthen security and efficiency of enterprise functions.

Betsy Foresman

Written by Betsy Foresman

Betsy Foresman was an education reporter for EdScoop from 2018 through early 2021, where she wrote about the virtues and challenges of innovative technology solutions used in higher education and K-12 spaces. Foresman also covered local government IT for StateScoop, on occasion. Foresman graduated from Texas Christian University in 2018 — go Frogs! — with a BA in journalism and psychology. During her senior year, she worked as an intern at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., and moved back to the capital after completing her degree because, like Shrek, she feels most at home in the swamp. Foresman previously worked at Scoop News Group as an editorial fellow.

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