Opportunities at: DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP)

Monday, October 1, 2018


The DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP) is keeping pace with the innovation community to tackle the hardest problems faced by DHS and the Homeland Security Enterprise. SVIP expands DHS S&T’s reach to find new technologies that strengthen national security with the goal of reshaping how government, entrepreneurs, and industry work together to find cutting-edge solutions. Based in California’s Silicon Valley, the program reaches out to innovation communities across the nation and around the world to harness the commercial R&D ecosystem for technologies with government applications and to co-invest in and accelerate technology transition-to-market.

Through a streamlined application and pitch process leveraging the Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation, SVIP seeks solutions to requirements ranging across the entire spectrum of the homeland security mission space, including cybersecurity and technology solutions for Customs and Border Protection and first responders.

Program SummaryCultivate: Educate the innovation community on DHS's mission and challenges.  Innovate: Leverage commercial investments and adapt to meet government needs.  How to Apply to the SVIP program. 1. Review Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation calls to see if you qualify and decide if your solution applies.  2. Email your application (check website for application form) to DHS-Silicon-Valley@hq.dhs.gov. 3. If we select your application: Prepare a 15-minute oral pitch and register in sam.gov (this is how we can pay you). 4. If selected for funding, contracts will provide you our standard Other Transaction Agreement. 5. Award time frame average is 45 days.

  • Open to U.S. and internationally based companies
  • Up to $800K over 24 months
  • Up to four phases of funding ($50 - $200K) each lasting between three and six months

Phase 1


3-6 months

Proof-of-Concept Demo

Phase 2


3-6 months

Demo Pilot-ready Prototype

Phase 3


3-6 months

Pilot-test Prototype in Operation

Phase 4


3-6 months

Test in Various Operational Scenarios





While the Department’s “Other Transaction” authority extends to “non-traditional government contractors,” the SVIP targets only a subset of those performers.

Only the following applicants are eligible for award under this program:

  • Applicants having fewer than 200 employees or full-time equivalents ( and
  • Applicants that have not been a party to any Federal Acquisition Regulation based contracts and/or federally awarded grants totaling more than $1,000,000 in the past 12 months, whether as a prime contractor or subcontractor.

Current Funding Opportunities

The S&T SVIP issued its first Innovation Other Transaction Solicitation (OTS) — HSHQDC-16-R-B0005 — in December 2015. The OTS describes the overall program framework and eligibility criteria. Individual calls describing specific technical areas and use cases will be issued under the Innovation OTS in the future.

Below are the open calls on OTS HSHQDC-16-R-B0005.

Current Portfolio Companies

Energy Harvesting Fabrics

  • Protect the Force (Boston Massachusetts) is developing a photovoltaic fiber that can be woven into a fabric matrix for integration into first responder gear. – Currently in Phase 1

Enhancing CBP Airport Passenger Processing

  • iProov (London, England) will develop a capability to allow travelers to quickly transit remote border ports of entry by optionally utilizing their personal devices to report their entry and exit to Customs and Border Protection with a secure, privacy focused mobile application. – Currently in Phase 1
  • Kiana Analytics, Inc. (Sunnyvale, California) will develop a smartphone based interview capability that includes the remote identity verification of travelers using a combination of biometric information and behavior/trend analysis from sensors available in remote ports of entry used by travelers. (Initial award February 2017) – Currently in Phase 2

Enhancements to the Global Travel Assessment System (GTAS)

  • DataRobot Inc. (Boston, Massachusetts) will provide statistical and machine-learning models and a predictive/scoring engine that performs batch and real-time assessments in a fraction of the time it currently takes. (Initial award September 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Omniscience Corporation (Palo Alto, California) will to build a fully functional model manager that will allow DHS and partner organizations to build models that can take in a high number of dimensions and significantly large data sets. (Initial award April 2017) – Currently in Phase 1
  • Tamr (Cambridge, Massachusetts) will use their core human-guided, machine learning software to achieve schema mapping and entity resolution.(Initial award December 2016) – Currently in Phase 3

Financial Services Cyber Security Active Defense (FSCSAD)

  • Cyber 20/20 (Newark, Delaware) will build TURACO, a next-generation sandbox, which uses machine learning to significantly extend Cuckoo, an open-source sandbox environment, and defend against anti-anti-sandbox malware. Currently in Phase 1
  • Def-Logix Inc. (San Antonio, Texas) will enhance its Entrap capability that provides malware detection, characterization and enhancement capabilities to enable the exchange of cyber threat indicators between the Federal Government and the private sector at machine speed. (Initial award December 2017) – Currently in Phase 1
  • Heilig Defense, LLC (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) will develop the Memory Sentry solution, which provides runtime application protection against specific memory-safety vulnerabilities. Memory Sentry is a “pre-exploitation” protection tool that can disrupt an attacker’s ability to successfully exploit software vulnerabilities.(Initial award October 2017) – Currently in Phase 1
  • NexiTech, Inc. (Woodland Park, Colorado) will develop an innovative Moving Target Defense approach to providing critical protection for storage devices and networks. It aims to protect storage management and data interfaces by creating multiple abstractions of devices—similar to frequency-hopping previously used in radio communication—to confuse potential cyber-attackers. (Initial award October 2017) – Currently in Phase 1
  • StackRox, Inc. (Mountain View, California) proposes a software solution that runs as a collection of integrated, container-based micro-services within a computing environment that identifies cyberattacks and uses container-native software to automatically stop malicious activity on affected applications. (Initial award May 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Veramine (Bothell, Washington) seeks to harden financial institutions' cyber defense by adding cyber intrusion deception, moving target defense, and isolation and containment capabilities to its current Endpoint Detection & Response platform with the aim to significantly increase the economic costs for potential attackers. (Initial award June 2017) – Currently in Phase 1

High Fidelity Counting and Measuring of CBP Queues and Service Times at Ports of Entry

  • Kiana Analytics, Inc. (Sunnyvale, California) will develop a cloud based solution that uses non-invasive Bluetooth and Wi-Fi sensors in conjunction with legacy sensors, such as cameras, to provide real-time measurements of crowd behavior and movement. – Currently in Phase 1

Identity and Anti-Spoofing of Non-Person Entities

  • Plurilock (Victoria, BC) will design an Identity Management (IdM) solution for non-person entities (NPEs) using behavioral and contextual data for multi-channel authentication.– Currently in Phase 1

Internet of Things (IoT) Security

  • Bastille Networks, Inc. (Atlanta, Georgia) will focus on identifying enterprise IoT protocols. (Initial award January 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Factom Inc (Austin, Texas) will create an identity log that captures the identification of a device, who manufactured it, lists of available updates, known security issues and granted authorities while adding the dimension of time for added security (Initial award June 2016). – Currently in Phase 3
  • Ionic Security (Atlanta, Georgia) will apply a novel distributed data protection model to solve the authentication, detection and confidentiality challenges that face distributed IoT devices, specifically, to improve the integrity of Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition Systems and industrial control infrastructure as well as critical components deployed in the DHS network (Initial award July 2016). – Currently in Phase 4
  • Machine-to-Machine Intelligence Corporation (M2Mi) (Moffett Field, California) will make the SPECK cryptographic protocol available to IoT devices (Initial award April 2016). – Currently in Phase 3
  • QED Secure Solutions LLC (Coppell, Texas) will develop a robust, vendor agnostic solution for verifying and validating third-party firmware updates for IoT devices. (Initial award January 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Whitescope LLC (Half Moon Bay, California) will build a secure 802.11 wireless communications gateway that will provide a centralized capability for identifying, characterizing, and securing access to IoT devices (Initial award May 2016). – Completed Phase 2

K9 Wearable Technologies

  • HaloLights LLC (Orlando, Florida) in conjunction with DHS S&T, will develop a canine wearable health monitoring device that leverages existing technology. The device will monitor and analyze vital signs and other health indicators of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) canine workforce. (Initial award September 2017) – Currently in Phase 1

Real-Time Intelligent Traveler Wayfinding

  • Arup USA (New York City, New York) proposed to develop a Bluetooth-enabled wayfinding technology to increase the efficiency of processing international travelers through customs.– Currently in Phase 1 
  • LocusLabs (Oakland, CA) will further develop LocusMaps, an opt-in, interactive navigation tool that provides bi-directional communication between travelers and U.S. Customs and Border Protection to aid in traveler navigation within airports and the customs process.– Currently in Phase 1 

Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Capabilities

  • Asymmetric Technologies (Columbus, Ohio) proposes to develop a platform-agnostic Secure UAS Flight Controller (SUFC) that improves the cybersecurity of commercial SUAS systems. This will reduce the risk of cyber attacks on the Department’s SUAS platforms by ensuring secure communication and control mechanisms with operators, secure surveillance telemetry streams, and on-board hardware security to prevent unauthorized access of data. (Initial award March 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Cryptomove, Inc. (San Mateo, California) proposes a dynamic defense data protection system that uses a data fragmentation approach for sUAS platforms to ensure data confidentiality, integrity, and availability. (Initial award February 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Echodyne (Bellevue, Washington) will leverage their new generation of ultra-low Cost, Size, Weight, and Power (C-SWaP) radar products based on its new Metamaterials Electronically Scanning Array (MESA) architecture to support Border Patrol operations.(Initial award December 2016) – Currently in Phase 3
  • Intelleuron (Boise, Idaho) will design a ruggedized, small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS) that incorporates machine learning, voice recognition, and artificial intelligence to detect obstacles and protect Customs and Border Patrol agents.– Currently in Phase 1
  • Planck Aerosystems (San Diego, California) aims to build a fully autonomous, truck-based, search, surveillance, and data delivery platform for DHS applications operated from a dash-mounted user interface which delivers real-time video and object detection to drivers and passengers, without the need for a dedicated pilot or extensive operator training. (Initial award March 2017) – Currently in Phase 2
  • Shield AI (San Diego, California) will develop autonomous sUAS’s that function where traditional platforms cannot, including GPS degraded areas.(Initial award December 2016) – Currently in Phase 2