hybrid cloud (Trum Ronnarong/Shutterstock.com)

High clouds: High impacts, high baselines and high-flying data

Microsoft extends FedRAMP high to public cloud

Microsoft will be offering users of its public cloud platform Azure services that have been certified by the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program at the high-impact level.  As part of an upgrade from the moderate-impact level, the company also said it has increased the number of high-impact services available 90. More information here.

Satellite data management as a service

To help organizations manage their satellite data, Amazon Web Services launched its AWS Ground Station service, a cloud-based system for that lets users control satellite communications, process data, and scale operations without managing their own ground station infrastructure. Ground Station offers access to a global network of stations in close proximity to the company's infrastructure regions, making it easier for organizations to quickly ingest and process their satellite data in the AWS Cloud. More information here.

Weather cloud

The Air Force is looking for FedRAMP cloud support, with authorization to operate at Impact Level 6, for its Pathfinder project for a severe weather artificial intelligence decision tools platform. According to the solicitation, the contractor should provide the full suite of cloud services, including any and all services, which in turn will be operationally configured by the government.

VMware on JEDI?

VMware is working on authority to operate at the high baseline level, CEO Pat Gelsinger said on an earnings call. VMware Cloud infrastructure-as-a-service offering currently has FedRAMP authorization at the moderate level.

When asked if VMware would have the opportunity participate in the Pentagon's Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract given its partnerships with both AWS and Microsoft, the two remaining competitors, Gelsinger said, "We are getting our offering ready to be able to be a cloud provider to government" and noted the company's installed base in the defense and intelligence communities. "So we see this as a significant opportunity and one that is an extension of our VMware cloud offering (that) is quite critical to us. So we are aligning ourselves up in a way that I think positions us to be participating with that."

UK cloud-first policy under review

The Crown Commercial Service, the British procurement agency that helps government, public-sector and third party organizations buy goods and services, has indicated that it is set to replace the government’s long-standing cloud first policy with more appropriate guidance that addresses hybrid environments, according to a report in Computer Weekly.

“As we have worked though the digital transformation journey with many central government departments and wider public sector organizations, it has become apparent that one size does not fit all,” said Niall Quinn, director of the technology pillar at CCS, in a statement. “We are seeing more and more customers land on a hybrid solution and therefore ‘cloud first’ may not be right for everyone.”

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