Download the Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security Policy docx format of Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security Policy


Reference #: ITD-SEC-17.1

Issue Date: March 7, 2014

Issue #: 1


Table of Contents


Executive Summary



Policy Statement

1. Security Requirements for IT Acquisition

2. Contractual agreements for the procurement of IT solutions must:

3. Application Requirements:

4. Documentation.

Roles and Responsibilities

Related Documents



Document History


Executive Summary

This Enterprise Information Technology Acquisition Security Policy (Policy), issued by the Executive Office of Technology Services and Security (EOTSS) provides requirements and evaluation guidelines for entities making “IT Acquisitions.” The Commonwealth has the responsibility to ensure that information technology solutions are procured in alignment with the Enterprise IT Security goals.  Therefore, both prepackaged and developed IT Solutions must be evaluated throughout their lifecycle.  Up front evaluation of IT Security compliance must be a key factor in determining the viability of a pre-packaged solution while incremental testing and final validation and verification is critical during any project that relies on development by third party vendors.  Funding for adequate testing of any future security remediation of the IT solution is the budgeting responsibility of the Secretariat/Agency that owns the IT solution. 



The following entities must adhere to this Policy (Applicable Entities):

  • Executive Department Agencies ; and
  • Non-Executive Department Entities when such entities are using Commonwealth Information Technology Capital Funds administered by EOTSS to acquire the Information Technology commodities and/or services.

Other Commonwealth entities are encouraged to adopt, at a minimum, policies and requirements in accordance with this Policy or more stringent policies that address the entity’s specific business-related directives, laws, and regulations.



This policy pertains to the security implications of Commonwealth Enterprise IT Acquisition.
Security issues including applicable regulatory compliance (Pub 1075, HIPAA, MGL. ch. 66A, etc.)  and contractual obligations (e.g. PCI) are key factors in effectively evaluating all elements of IT solutions.  Examples of such elements could include, but are not limited to:

  • Hosted services
  • Hardware
  • Software
  • Consulting services to produce, integrate, or maintain code
  • Consulting services to implement, deploy, or maintain an IT solution

Policy Statement

The objective of this policy is to ensure that security requirements are an integral consideration when acquiring IT solutions. 

1. Security Requirements for IT Acquisition

1.1 Applicable Entities that contract for a systems acquisition or development where the system will house  personal  information must comply with Executive Order 504 Vendor Certification Requirements utilizing the Vendor Certification Form therein.

1.2 VPN certificates required for work performed as part of or as a result of an IT acquisition must be uniquely assigned to specific persons performing said work and must never be transferred to any other persons for any reason.

1.3 Applicable Commonwealth Entities are responsible for satisfactorily remediating IT solutions to meet security obligations in the event an acquired solution is deemed to have a flaw or vulnerability.  Planning for costs associated with improving an acquired solution must be part of the budget in any IT solution acquisition.  Regardless of the physical location of the solution/network, it is incumbent upon the Commonwealth entity to strategize on future security planning and testing.


2. Contractual agreements for the procurement of IT solutions must:

2.1 Include provisions for vendors to validate compliance with security requirements based on Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security/Application Standards. Adherence will enable procuring agencies to standardize initial compliance in alignment with current industry standards/best practices facilitate understanding for the level of effort required to conduct ongoing vulnerability analyses.

2.2 Provide for comparable and separate development and test environments so that technical staff may effectively use non-production environments to support the application without impacting production systems and live data.

2.3 Identify within the contract any adopted or specific industry standard with which an endpoint solution (appliance, firewall, etc.) must comply.  Require that the agency and vendor jointly define, document and implement mandated data security and compliance requirements such as HIPAA, MGL. s. 66A, PCI Standards, etc.

2.4 Require that the vendor’s system documentation articulates system security requirements for applications being developed.

2.5 Ensure that third party components integrated into the system by the vendor comply with this policy.

2.6 Require the vendor to certify that the solution is free security defects. In the event that a vendor is unable to certify the solution, it must provide acceptable compensating and/or mitigating controls that will effectively meet EOTSS, Secretariat and Agency compliance and or security requirements.

2.7 Require confidentiality with regard to the nature and implementation of secure Commonwealth assets, information, technologies, technical infrastructure, and security-related policies and procedures.  Agreements of confidentiality must be signed by each person granted access as part of acquisition/development.  The vendor’s signature of the Commonwealth’s Terms and Conditions, section 6 of which imposes a confidentiality requirement on the vendor, suffices to meet this obligation with respect to vendors. Agencies can meet this obligation with respect to individual persons (contractors or employees for the Vendor and its subcontractors) by having them sign the standard Intellectual Property Agreement for Contractor’s Employees, Consultants and Agents.  

2.8 Use of the same automated tools to be deployed during the Test and Acceptance phase as are/will be deployed during the Production phase.  Such tools must perform comprehensive, rigorous, and consistent application functionality tests.  Such tests are required and if possible, subsequent to ascertaining whether or not it is cost prohibitive, data involved in such testing should be encrypted.


3. Application Requirements:

Application Acquisition (including development by third parties) must include the following measures:

3.1. Secretariats and their respective Agencies must oversee design and development of third party application systems in a manner consistent with the Security Controls articulated in the Design and Development section of the Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security/Application Standards in conjunction with all other relevant policies and standards.

3.2. Secretariats and their respective Agencies must employ test and acceptance procedures for application systems in a manner consistent with the Security Controls articulated in the Test and Acceptance section of the Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security/Application Standards.

3.3. All information must be afforded the protections required by its sensitivity classification throughout the IT solution’s lifecycle, without regard to whether or not the IT solution is currently in production.


4. Documentation

4.1. All IT solution acquisitions, development, and deployments  must maintain security documentation that includes, but is not limited to the following subject areas:

    • Security objectives and related controls
    • System maintenance procedures/patching processes
    • System recovery procedures
    • Embedded security features
    • Data classification
    • Vulnerability/risk assessment


Roles and Responsibilities

All Secretariats and their respective Agencies and entities governed by the overarching Enterprise Information Security Policy are subject to the referenced roles and responsibilities in addition to those specifically stated within this supporting policy.  The roles and responsibilities associated with implementation and compliance with this policy follow:

Assistant Secretary for Information Technology

  • Develop mandatory standards and procedures for Secretariats and their respective Agencies to follow before entering into contracts providing third parties with access to electronic high sensitivity information including, but not limited to, personal information or IT systems containing such information.
  • Approval and adoption of this Enterprise Access Control Policy and its revisions.

Secretariat Chief Information Officer (SCIO) and Agency Head

  • Exercise due diligence in adhering to the requirements contained in this policy.
  • Provide communication, training and enforcement of this policy that support the security goals of the Secretariat, its respective Agencies, and the Commonwealth.

Secretariat or Agency Information Security Officer (ISO)

  • Ensure that the goals and requirements of the Enterprise IT Acquisition Security Policy are met.

The Executive Office of Technology Services and Security (EOTSS), (led by the Assistant Secretary for Information Technology/the Commonwealth’s Chief Information Officer)

  • Providing guidance and consultation to Applicable Entities regarding IT Acquisitions and solution alternatives.

Secretariat Chief Information Officers (SCIO) and Agency Heads

  • Responsible for exercising due diligence in adhering to the requirements contained in this Policy.
  • Provide communication, training and enforcement of this Policy that support the enterprise, architecture, Accessibility, security and procurement goals of the Secretariat, its agencies and the Commonwealth.

Applicable Entities

  • • Ensure compliance with this Policy for all prospective IT Acquisitions, including adherence to this Policy by all personnel conducting or participating in procurements on behalf of the Applicable Agency where such personnel includes but is not necessarily limited to employees, contractors, volunteers, and interns.

Enterprise Security Board (ESB)

  • Recommend revisions and updates to this policy and related standards.



Related Documents

Enterprise IT Acquisitions Security/Application Standards

Enterprise Access Control Security Policies and Standards

Enterprise Technical Reference Model

IT Acquisition Accessibility Compliance Program

Enterprise Information Technology Accessibility Standards

Enterprise Web Accessibility Standards

Enterprise Security Policy and Standards

Commonwealth Open Standards Policy

Open Source License Legal Toolkit

Enterprise Desktop Power Management Standards

Executive Orders 504 and 532

801 CMR 21.00 doc format of 801cmr21.doc

Procurement Information Center

Statewide Contract Booklet





Key terms used in this policy have been provided below for your convenience.  For a full list of terms please refer to the Information Technology Division’s web site where a full glossary of Commonwealth Specific Terms is maintained.


Applicable Entities: Those entities identified under the “Applicability” section of this Policy.


IT Acquisition:  Acquisitions that include but are not limited to: information technology and telecommunications-related commodities and/or services, such as hardware and software, software as a service or cloud commodities and/or services; software license and hardware maintenance, including renewals; and related installation, integration or other consulting services.


HIPAA: Acronym that stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, a US law designed to provide privacy standards to protect patients' medical records and other health information provided to health plans, doctors, hospitals and other health care providers.


Payment Card Industry (PCI):  A proprietary information security standard for organizations that handle cardholder information for the major debit, credit, prepaid, e-purse, ATM, and POS cards.


Personal information (PI): Personal information as defined in Massachusetts General Laws ch. 93H, and personal data as defined in Chapter 66A.

Chapter 93 H defines personal information as “a resident’s first name and last name or first initial and last name in combination with any 1 or more of the following data elements that relate to such resident:

(a) Social Security number;

(b) driver’s license number or state-issued identification card number; or

(c) financial account number, or credit or debit card number, with or without any required security code, access code, personal identification number or password, that would permit access to a resident’s financial account; provided, however, that “Personal information” shall not include information that is lawfully obtained from publicly available information, or from federal, state or local government records lawfully made available to the general public.

Chapter 66A defines personal information as  “any information concerning an individual which, because of name, identifying number, mark or description can be readily associated with a particular individual; provided, however, that such information is not contained in a public record, as defined in clause Twenty-sixth of section seven of chapter four and shall not include intelligence information, evaluative information or criminal offender record information as defined in section one hundred and sixty-seven of chapter six”.


Document History



Effective Date

Next Review Date


Document Published








Accessibility remediation – no content changes




[1] The Executive Department is comprised of the Executive Branch minus the Constitutional Offices, i.e., the State Auditor, State Treasurer, the Attorney General, the Secretary of the Commonwealth, and the Governor’s Office.