Government Agencies Moving to the Cloud
At Rescale, we are excited to work with government agencies in the area of high-performance computing applications. In recent years, the government has shifted its approach to IT infrastructure management in favor of cloud computing, indicating that a number of concerns about the cloud are no longer seen as issues.
According to the U.S. Federal Cloud Computing Strategy, the U.S. government instituted the Cloud First policy to accelerate the pace of cloud adoption, resulting in a projected spending of $118M on public cloud offerings in 2014. The Cloud First policy mandates that agencies take full advantage of cloud computing benefits to maximize capacity utilization, improve IT flexibility and responsiveness, and minimize cost.
Cloud deployments mitigate costs by sharing services and infrastructure, which, in turn, means that the government must also address the stringent compliance and security requirements (FISMA, FIPS and FedRAMP mandates) to avoid compromising national security. The Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) provides a standardized approach to security assessment, authorization, and continuous monitoring for government cloud products and services.
Cloud adoption is also helping government agencies improve operational flexibility. The U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy, Department of Justice, Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Department of Education, among others have been early cloud adopters, setting the trend and direction for others to follow. The USDA, for example, launched a broad initiative to upgrade and streamline the 21 separate e-mail systems it contracted from various providers. The USDA decided to aggregate demand in a single cloud provider and retire its related internal assets. Doing so effectively transformed the USDA email assets to email service, which vastly improved agility and scalability.
One of the latest examples of security-conscious cloud transformation is the CIA contracting with Amazon to provide a new cloud computing solution. Clearly, the government is satisfied that security concerns can be effectively managed in cloud installations, and that the efficiency and agility of cloud-based resources serve the government’s purposes well.
With respect to security, at Rescale we maintain the highest levels of security practices and are certified by multiple security certification programs. We understand that proprietary IP and mission-critical data must remain within full control of their owners. For this reason, we employ the same encryption technology used in banking for all of our data transmission, and encrypt data once more for storage in the cloud. You can learn more about Rescale’s security here. We look forward to a future where cloud computing is widely adopted by enterprises and governments alike.
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