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Configuration Management Policy

Approved Date – 02/22/2021
Published Date – 02/22/2021
Revised Date –  02/23/2023

1. Purpose

Ensure that all configuration changes to the District of Columbia Government ("District”) owned information assets and resources are done with management’s knowledge and consent, appropriately tested, and does not introduce security weaknesses to the District’s Information system.

2. Authority

DC Official Code § 1-1401 et seq., provides the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (“OCTO”) with the authority to provide information technology (IT) services, write and enforce IT policies, and secure the network and IT systems for the District government. This document can be found at:

3. Applicability

This policy applies to all District workforce members performing official functions on behalf of the District, and/or any District agency/District/entity who receive enterprise services from OCTO. In addition, this policy applies to any provider and third-party entity with access to District information, systems, networks and applications.

4. Policy

District agencies and departments must develop or adhere to a strategy which demonstrates compliance with this policy and its related standards. The following outlines the requirements for this policy.

The District's agencies must develop and review or update annually and after change to the policy, a procedure in support of this policy with the following requirements.

4.1.   Baseline Configuration

District agencies must provide common security configurations that provide a baseline level of security, reduce risk from security threats and vulnerabilities, and save time and resources. This requirement will allow the District agencies to improve information system performance, decrease operating costs, and ensure public confidence in the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the District data.

4.2.   Security Impact Analysis

All the District agencies must analyze changes to the system to determine potential security impacts prior to change. The system owners or business owners will conduct a security impact analysis to determine which controls will be assessed for proper implementation and operation. Security impact analysis may include, for example, reviewing system plans to understand security control requirements and reviewing system design documentation to understand control implementation and how specific changes might affect the controls.

4.3.  Access Restrictions For Change

All the District agencies must define, document, approve and enforce physical and logical access restrictions associated with changes to the information system. Only qualified and authorized District workforce members can be granted access to the system to initiate changes, including upgrades and modifications.

4.4.   Configuration Settings

All District agencies must:

4.4.1.   Establish and document configuration settings for information technology products employed within the information system in accordance with CIS benchmarks for servers and network devices as part of configuration files that reflect the most restrictive mode consistent with operational requirements;

4.4.2.   Implement the configuration settings

4.4.3.   Identify, document, and approve any deviations from established configuration settings for information systems based on Nessus CIS benchmarking of information systems

4.4.4.   Monitor and control changes to the configuration settings in accordance with District agencies policies and procedures.

4.5.   Least Functionality

All District agencies must configure information systems to provide only essential capabilities and prohibit the use of functions, ports, protocols, and/or services that are not required for the business function of the information system.

4.6.   Information System Component Inventory

All District agencies must:

4.6.1.   Develop and document an inventory of information system components that:

  • Accurately reflects the current information system.
  • Includes all components within the authorization boundary.
  • Is at the level of granularity deemed necessary for tracking and reporting; and
  • Includes an information system component inventory for servers, workstations, network devices, and peripheral devices maintained and monitored through the enterprise hardware/software asset management tool.

4.6.2.   Reviews and updates the information system component inventory annually and as required.

4.7.   Software Usage Restrictions

All District agencies are required to:

4.7.1.   Use software and associated documentation per contract agreements and copyright laws.

4.7.2.   Track the use of software and associated documentation protected by quantity licenses to control copying and distribution.

4.7.3.   Control and document the use of peer-to-peer file-sharing technology to ensure that this capability is not used for the unauthorized distribution, display, performance, or reproduction of copyrighted work.

4.8.   User Installed Software

All District agencies must:

4.8.1.   Establish the policies governing the installation of software by users.

4.8.2.   Enforce software installation policies through the IT Asset Management process.

4.8.3.   Monitor policy compliance annually.

5. Exemptions

Exceptions to this policy shall be requested in writing to the Agency’s CIO and the request will be escalated to the OCTO Chief Information Security Officer (“CISO”) for approval.

6. Definitions

The definition of the terms used in this document can be found in the Policy Definitions website.