Army begins final phase of migration to enterprise e-mail

The Army is on the last leg of its journey to enterprise e-mail, Mike Krieger, the service's deputy CIO, said March 12.

The final phase of the migration underway to Defense Enterprise Email (DEE) consists of migrations involving the Army Knowledge Online (AKO) and Secure IP Network (SIPRNet), Krieger said in a letter to service members on the Army CIO website.

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The migration, in which the Army worked closely with the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) and Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC), made possible a migration that passed the one million user milestone the same day, he said.

As of February, the Army had completed Sensitive NIPR migrations for the Army Accessions Command, Military Entrance Processing Command, Army Material Command Headquarters, South West Asia, and Africa Command/Horn of Africa, Krieger said. He said the service is in the process of migrating the Army Medical Command.

Migrations also are complete for Army National Guard and Army Reserve using government-provided computers, he said. The service began migrating Army Reserve AKO-only users in February, and it will start Army National Guard AKO-only users in March Krieger said.

He said the service recently began the full-scale migration of 650,000 AKO users, which affects Soldiers, Army civilians and contractors.

"At the same time, we're accelerating migrations to DEE on SIPRNet, where we've already migrated 36,000 (out of 86,000 total) Army users," he said in the letter.

As planned, some organizations will complete migrations after 31 March—the target date for most of the Army, he said. Once DEE migrations conclude, the long-term focus will shift to the continuous improvement of the DEE managed service, Krieger said.

Krieger noted that many users, especially in the National Guard and Army Reserve, have voiced concerns about losing access to AKO mail on their personal mobile devices. In addition some of the 6,000 Beta Mail users in a Microsoft program have voiced concerns about losing access to AKO mail via the Beta Mail’s more relaxed security, he said

"We are working with our DISA partner to understand the policy and security issues with personally owned devices and are working on approaches to provide access to DEE and other Army data in ways that will not put Army data at risk of loss on these devices," Krieger said in the letter. "To date we have successfully addressed the issue of access to DEE on personally owned desktops and laptops using OWA, and will continue to work the issue of access on smart phones and tablets."

Meanwhile, DISA and the Army are "aggressively" working mobile solutions for DEE, Krieger said. He said there are currently several hundred government-owned iOS and Android devices securely using DEE via DISA-hosted Good Technology Corporation mobile servers. The number of mobile devices is scheduled to expand to several thousand over the next several months. DISA will continue to roll out secure mobility enhancements to extend access to more mobile devices, he said.

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