NIST 800-171 Compliance for Federal


The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) compliance 800-171, derived by a non-regulatory government agency, deals with the protection of the confidentiality of CUI (Controlled Unclassified Information) with predefined clauses. Typically the NIST cybersecurity directive states the metrics and standards for driving innovation and economic competitiveness among organizations across the U.S.

As all know there is no need to define compliance; in fact a compliance is a set of guidelines followed stakeholders associated with it. There are few standards set for the NIST compliance. NIST standards hand out several security documents and publications that are designed as a framework for federal agencies. The NIST compliance for federal contractor strictly deals with stringent security measures for federal agencies. NIST compliance is also understood as the fixed guidelines for Standards security measures for information systems at the federal level. The growing importance of NIST compliance not only among the government agencies but also non-governmental organizations, is attributed to the proliferation of cybersecurity.

Key Pointers

The NIST compliance for federal contractor publication has mentioned 14 key pointers that define necessary security requirements to ensure information systems monitor and safeguard CUIs. The security requirements that are categorized into 14 families discuss how to protect information on day to day basis.

  • Access Control
  • Awareness and Training
  • Audit and Accountability
  • Configuration Management
  • Identification and Authentication
  • Incident Response
  • Maintenance
  • Media Protection
  • Personnel Security
  • Physical Protection
  • Risk Assessment
  • Security Assessment
  • System and Communications Protection
  • System and Information Integrity


The NIST compliance for federal contractor states the minimum requirements for an organizations to be a part of the NIST compliant group. Once an organizations withholds the security measures and fulfils the regulations, then it likely puts up a compelling case government and non-government contracts. The important requirement of NIST 800-171 compliance includes the protection of the client’s information. The protection of the client’s information also ensure the safeguarding of CUI. This type of information is stored inside the internal system and must be protected by preventing unauthorized access to permission. Additionally the NIST 800-171 binds the organizations to notify the federal agencies in case of data breach and incidences related to a security threat.

The data breach response consist of identifying data breach and submission of the administrative access of the impacted systems. The standards also allow government organizations to regulate the standards with the use of technology across various industries. The NIST compliance for federal contractor will help organizations to store, monitor, and exchange information securely. The proliferation of cyberterrorism has driven the need for such compliance to improve cybersecurity over the past few years. The technological innovation will likely reduce the risk associated with cyberterrorism and data beach. The implementation of NIST compliance will ensure data security and provide a shield unauthorized access.

What does it mean to be NIST Compliant for federal contractor?

The NIST Compliance for federal contractor holds organizations responsible to store, monitor, and communicate client’s information. Relevant regulations allow high standards of cybersecurity and privacy, thus limiting cybercrimes and reducing the overall number of data breaches. Federal agencies also put penalties for non-compliance while handing out government defense contracts.

The NIST Compliance for federal contactor is also applicable to government contracts and end to end manufacturers working directly with the government or in adjacent fields.

Additionally, it is made mandatory that all Department of Defense (DOD) suppliers and contractors should implement NIST publication 800-171 controls DFARS regulations. The compliance will likely support the U.S government’s mission to nullify any risk that can harm the government intellectual property.