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UPDATED: Syracuse tech firm wins FBI contract

fbi_Sam Howzit.jpg
Sam Howzit
via Flickr
Even G-Men need tech support: A Syracuse firm has landed a contract for software to handle the FBI's internal communication.

Federal agencies have been dealing with slimmer budgets lately. That means they’re more willing to work with small companies, who might not have a ton of brand name recognition, but which are motivated to offer low-bid deals to nab a contract.

That's according to Marek Podgorny, CEO of Collabworx. The Syracuse-based firm landed a pilot deal with the FBI a couple of years ago, and now that deal has been extended into a longer term relationship.

Podgorny acknowledges that working with a start-up like his might be risky for an agency, since the firm has a shorter track record. But they're also smaller and cheaper than the IBMs and Adobes of the world, which Podgorny says his company beat out for the $1.2 million deal.

So what will Collabworx do for the FBI? Make it more efficient to share data like videos, satellite images, and documents without taking up significant bandwidth, and protect that data using complex security.

Collabworx and another business - Govsphere - will administer the program for the agency. Both firms are located in the Tech Garden, a business incubator in Syracuse


To be clear, what the FBI is actually using the software for is classified. The examples that we gave above, sharing videos and satellite images, are just that: examples of what the software is capable of, according to Podgorny. They don't represent what the agency will actually be doing with Collabworx conferencing software.

Innovation Trail alumnus Ryan Morden is originally from Seattle. He graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor's in journalism, minoring in political science and Scandinavian studies. Morden was Morning Edition producer and reporter at WRVO before moving over to the Innovation Trail project. Before landing at WRVO, Morden covered the Washington State legislature as a correspondent for Northwest News Network (N3), a group of nine NPR affiliates in the northwest.
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