Government Technology

Microsoft Unveils Dedicated Cloud for Government



February 24, 2010 By

REDMOND, Wash. -- Government cloud computing continues to move away from the theoretical and toward the practical as Microsoft announced Wednesday, Feb. 24, the launch of a dedicated government cloud based on the company's Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). The announcement was made at the company's annual U.S. Public Sector CIO Summit.

The cloud offering, known as BPOS Federal, was designed to meet stringent security standards, said Gail Thomas-Flynn, Microsoft's vice president for state and local government. BPOS Federal, she said, is expected to attain Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) certification. In a speech Wednesday, corporate vice president Ron Markezich said FISMA certification is expected in six months.

Thomas-Flynn also said the suite will be compliant with International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITARS), meaning physical access to systems will be controlled by biometrics and limited to U.S. citizens who have undergone an extensive background investigation.

"Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite will now offer unmatched capabilities for our government customers and their unique needs," said Curt Kolcun, vice president of Microsoft U.S. Public Sector. "The enhancements we're introducing today and over the next six months raise the bar on security and privacy."

What makes BPOS different, Thomas-Flynn said, is that it was built using a hybrid model that allows users to place some data on premises and some in the cloud, depending on their needs and preferences.

According to Stuart McKee (pictured), Microsoft's U.S. national technology officer, this hybrid cloud is part of what he called "the Microsoft road map." McKee said this road map is a process of offering government customers more choice and flexibility that he believes will lead customers to see Microsoft as a trustworthy industry partner.

This development is part of a larger Microsoft push into cloud services, most notably via Windows Azure, the company's cloud services platform.

 


| More

Comments

Add Your Comment

You are solely responsible for the content of your comments. We reserve the right to remove comments that are considered profane, vulgar, obscene, factually inaccurate, off-topic, or considered a personal attack.

In Our Library

White Papers | Exclusives Reports | Webinar Archives | Best Practices and Case Studies
Maintain Your IT Budget with Consistent Compliance Practices
Between the demands of meeting federal IT compliance mandates, increasing cybersecurity threats, and ever-shrinking budgets, it’s not uncommon for routine maintenance tasks to slip among state and local government IT departments. If it’s been months, or even only days, since you have maintained your systems, your agency may not be prepared for a compliance audit—and that could have severe financial consequences. Regardless of your mission, consistent systems keep your data secure, your age
Best Practice Guide for Cloud and As-A-Service Procurements
While technology service options for government continue to evolve, procurement processes and policies have remained firmly rooted in practices that are no longer effective. This guide, built upon the collaborative work of state and local government and industry executives, outlines and explains the changes needed for more flexible and agile procurement processes.
Fresh Ideas In Online Security for Public Safety Organizations
Lesley Carhart, Senior Information Security Specialist at Motorola Solutions, knows that online and computer security are more challenging than ever. Personal smartphones, removable devices like USB storage drives, and social media have a significant impact on security. In “Fresh Ideas in Online Security for Public Safely Organizations,” Lesley provides recommendations to improve your online security against threats from social networks, removable devices, weak passwords and digital photos.
View All

Featured Papers