The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of the US Department of Defense has awarded a $12m contract to Parsons’ subsidiary BlackHorse Solutions for a research project under the Signature Management using Operational Knowledge and Environments (SMOKE) programme.

This cost-plus-fixed-fee contract was secured by the subsidiary via a competitive acquisition process.

Given that cyber networks are always under threat from malicious cyber-attacks, Parsons will build data-driven tools that can automate the planning and execution of threat-emulated cyber infrastructure required for network security evaluations under the SMOKE programme.

Parsons executive vice-president of high consequence missions Mike Kushin said: “Our offensive and defensive cyberspace operations combine leading edge technical innovations, mission planning and automation solutions, cyber threat intelligence, and advanced cyber threat hunting and incident response to protect networks and enhance mission effectiveness.

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“We look forward to advancing DARPA’s mission through a comprehensive, converged offering of technologies and tools that expose and enable system and network vulnerabilities to anticipate and neutralise threats across the multi-domain battlespace.”

The SMOKE programme will explore the building of data-driven tools that help to automate the process of finding distinct patterns of complex cyber threat infrastructure.

 It is also designed to build prototype components that allow red teams to plan, develop, and deploy cyber infrastructure that is informed by machine-readable signs of complex cyber threats.

In November 2022, Parsons was awarded a new task order to undertake remedial investigations and feasibility studies at the US Army National Guard’s (ARNG) multiple facilities.

With an estimated value of $28m, the firm-fixed price task order was awarded by the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore District.

In June 2022, Parsons closed the acquisition of Xator, a mission-focused solutions provider to government clients, for $400m.