Addendum to DOJ IT Strategic Plan 2006-2011
Update on recent progress in Information Sharing, as related to DOJ’s implementation of the E-Gov Act of 2002.

This addendum to the DOJ IT Strategic Plan 2006-2011 details the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) progress during the past year to implement the E-Government Act of 2002, addressing the guidance put forth in the Office of Management and Budget’s Memoranda M-06-02, M-06-25 and M-07-20. 

The implementation of the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) and LEISP Exchange Specifications (LEXS) in the Justice Domain are two major success stories for the Department in 2007.  The widespread use of NIEM and the level of enthusiasm around the NIEM project were recently validated by the attendance of over 350 practitioners at the NIEM User’s Conference held in Chicago in August 2007.  Many success stories and best practices were shared by the communities of interest in attendance.  Seed money from the DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) has helped the initiative, but much of the success of NIEM is based on voluntary adoption of standards that meet the needs of users and technical personnel supporting them in 18,000 local law enforcement agencies.

DOJ progress over the past year also includes sharing information between federal, state, local and tribal agencies through the Law Enforcement Information Sharing Program (LEISP), implementing the Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA) Data Reference Model (DRM) through DOJ’s Enterprise Architecture (specifically, the DOJ Information Sharing Segment Architecture), and sharing information with the public through DOJ websites. 

Information Sharing Through the NIEM and Segment Architecture

The National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) was launched on April 19, 2005, through a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between DOJ and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to develop, disseminate, and support information exchange standards and processes to enable organizations to effectively share information in emergency and routine situations. On July 30, 2007, NIEM Version 2.0 production candidate was published.

NIEM provides a methodology, set of standards and set of processes to describe and facilitate the exchange of data between DOJ and other partner entities such as DHS, the Intelligence Community and state and local governments. NIEM implementation specifically implements both the spirit and specific intent of the FEA DRM and the requirements of Section 207 (d) of the E-Government Act of 2002 and the requirements discussed in OMB Memorandum M-06-02.

Participation of state, local, and tribal practitioners has been critical to the success of NIEM.  This participation has ensured relevance to, and buy-in from, mission owners in the field, and helps DOJ communicate with its non-Federal stakeholders.  The justice domain within NIEM is represented by collaboration between DOJ and DOJ’s Global Justice Information Sharing Initiative (Global), which serves the Attorney General under the Federal Advisory Committee Act and provides guidance and recommendations on issues relating to information sharing.  Global is administered by and receives policy support from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA).

In conjunction with DHS, DOJ is using NIEM to define agency data and relationships among data elements in relation to other agencies, along with state, local, and tribal governments, the private sector and foreign partners.  The Information Exchange Package Documentation (IEPD) Clearinghouse provides information on a variety of IEPDs that have been submitted by individuals and organizations who have implemented the Global Justice XML Data Model (GJXDM) and NIEM.  Currently there are 85 IEPDs in the Clearinghouse.  NIEM is now extending the successful framework of GJXDM for exchanging justice information to the domains of international trade, infrastructure protection, immigration, emergency and disaster management, people screening and geospatial.

Under the auspices of NIEM, state and local jurisdictions are reporting substantial cost savings from removing barriers to information sharing and reducing the design and development time needed to build and implement systems.

Other related successes and implementations using NIEM include:

Internal (within DOJ)

Justice Community (external to DOJ)

Cross Federal

The DOJ Law Enforcement Information Sharing Program (LEISP) Exchange Specifications (LEXS) is an implementation of NIEM that provides for enhanced levels of semantic inter-operability as well as reuse with an initial focus on law enforcement incident reporting. DOJ is transforming the way it shares law enforcement information with its federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement partners through LEXS. DOJ will achieve its vision by formulating information sharing policies and standard business practices and by creating a unified, DOJ-wide technology architecture that will position DOJ as a committed partner in an information sharing environment of federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies.

In supporting the LEISP initiative, DOJ intends to leverage as many of its currently existing or planned information sharing investments as possible. DOJ has identified two investments that will provide capabilities that map well to some of the functions within the LEISP architecture, and effectively implement key aspects of the FEA DRM. Deployment of these DOJ investments will facilitate increased timely access to DOJ’s law enforcement information. These investments are the Regional Data Exchange (R-DEx) and the National Data Exchange (N-DEx) programs. Each investment will be the catalyst to fulfill a portion of the overall LEISP architecture. R-DEx 6.0 is currently operational, while N-DEx is currently in the planning and development phase. 

Another way that LEISP is improving access to data is through the Trusted Credential project.  By establishing trust networks between disparate systems, users may use a single logon credential to access multiple data sources, greatly streamlining the issues relating to user management and access control policy.  DOJ is working to ensure that this work is in alignment with a complementary initiative under the auspices of the Global organization and BJA, the Global Federated Identity and Privilege Management (GFIPM) program.  By working together with the state, local, and tribal partners within Global, DOJ is working to break down the information silos at all levels of government.

DOJ, in conjunction with the Criminal Intelligence Coordination Council (CICC), is also working to provide tools and resources to support criminal intelligence functions within law enforcement at the state and local level, and specifically to support the Fusion Center concept nationwide.  The National Criminal Intelligence Resource Center, supported by BJA, is a clearinghouse for best practices, policies, and training and technical assistance resources to enable the field to better apply criminal intelligence in the pursuit of more effective intelligence-led policing.  DOJ has also partnered with DHS to provide a comprehensive guide to resources available to state, local, and tribal agencies to assist in establishing, managing, and governing a Fusion Center, and to support consistent operating policies through common Business Architecture to better enable the potential for nationwide sharing of criminal intelligence information.

DOJ’s EA documents information sharing as a strategic cross-cutting segment.  The Information Sharing Segment Architecture (ISSA) will specifically implement the requirements of OMB Memorandum M-06-02 for information sharing activities across the various lines of business in DOJ’s EA.  The ISSA will utilize the methodology and structure provided by the FEA DRM applied to key information sharing scenarios identified in DOJ’s Business Architecture to build out a cross-cutting Enterprise Information Sharing target architecture.

The purpose of DOJ’s ISSA is to:

DOJ is using a scenario-based approach to documenting its information sharing segment architecture.  It is applying a traditional EA analysis by layer to these scenarios.  The two scenarios currently being developed are Law Enforcement and Process Automation (Investigation through Litigation).  DOJ chose a scenario-based approach for the Department’s ISSA because it serves as a tool to analyze a subset of the enterprise architecture in its as-is state and to test against it for future developments.

Recognizing that it is essential that DOJ’s EA program allows the greatest interoperability with its state, local and tribal partners, DOJ has been coordinating with the Global Justice Reference Architecture (JRA) program.  The JRA is an ongoing program to provide guidelines and support to the justice field in implementing Service Oriented Architecture, in conjunction with NIEM, to improve information sharing at a peer to peer level and between DOJ and the field at large.  Supporting the integration of JRA concepts with DOJ EA provides a powerful implementation of the OneDOJ initiative.

In addition, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) is promoting the use of EA at the state level, in partnership with BJA.  NASCIO is incorporating these concepts to further establish linkages in the use of EA across levels of government, and institutionalizing NIEM and related best practices, so that DOJ is able to more effectively leverage common management practices and technology to support the needs of its constituents.

Information Dissemination to the Public

During the last year DOJ continued and expanded numerous activities designed to promote the dissemination of information to the public.  These activities include:

DOJ IT Strategic Plan, FY 2006-2011