The House of Representatives has officially jumped on the open source bandwagon. A June 25 announcement declared that U.S. representatives, committees and staff would be able to procure open source software, participate in open source software communities and contribute code developed with taxpayer dollars to open source repositories.
The National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) is the latest government spy agency to take the leap into the open source software community.
Other U.S. spy agencies have also embraced open source technology in recent projects. With security being such an important issue, it might seem counterintuitive to use software whose source code is openly available, but experts say that kind of transparency is one reason open source systems could be more secure—or at least no less secure—that closed systems.
Open source is a disruptive distribution strategy. It allows potential users and buyers of a software to try it, evaluate it, and understand exactly how it works because the source code is freely available. Open source companies market to developers exactly how developers would like to be marketed to – with code.