Federal I.T. In the Cloud?

Congress considers moving Federal IT to the cloud

There’s a movement afoot in Congress to encourage more government workloads to migrate to cloud computing platforms, according to GovInfoSecurity.com. A bill named Move IT Act aims to sure up cybersecurity defenses and upgrade legacy infrastructure systems while making it easier for federal agencies to use cloud computing services.

The move could be a significant one for the industry. Having the blessing of Congress, or even better for the industry a mandate, will only help to hasten the move of government workloads to the cloud. Providers are already priming their clouds for these workloads. Amazon Web Services has a whole region of its cloud dedicated to federal government and other related workloads named GovCloud. Microsoft has a similar Azure Government offering.

Amazon acquisition of Cloud9

It’s not too frequent that Amazon makes an acquisition in the cloud computing market, but last week the company purchased Cloud9, a startup that makes an integrated development environment (IDE) platform. The move is interesting for a number of reasons:

-It shows Amazon’s willingness to do M&A to support its IaaS business.

-It signals AWS’s desire to position its IaaS as an application development platform

-As one of my Twitter followers pointed out to me, the acquisition is particularly interesting considering a recent survey by Morgan Stanley of CIOs. More respondents said they expect to use Microsoft Azure over AWS in three years. While CIOs may be more interested in using Azure, AWs may be trying to keep developer momentum on their side.

Microsoft’s big win in cloud data

justice cloudMichael Coghlan (modified)

Microsoft won a significant legal battle in the cloud last week when a U.S. Appeals court ruled that the company does not have to hand over emails stored on a server in Ireland. U.S. Search warrants, the court ruled, do not apply to data stored solely outside of the country.

Other cloud storage providers applauded the decision. Panzura’s CMO Barry Phillips said the ruling was “inevitable” while CTERA issued a statement saying that customers who want to ensure their cloud data cannot be handed over in a subpoena need to use strong encryption methods and hold the keys themselves.

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