Cost control, flexibility, better constituent service delivery and the ability to maintain control of a network are just some of the reasons that agencies from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to the U.S. Army and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) are moving to cloud services. In this Federal News Roundup, we learn that the HHS and the Army are looking to cloud solutions to help curb costs and create efficiencies, and SolarWinds shares insights into how to protect a network when employees connect to the cloud from personal devices.
HHS Outlines Lofty Cloud Plans Despite IT Budget Squeeze
The federal government’s largest civilian agency, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is looking for the way to use both public and private cloud services for its programs, which include the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and others. But, while demand for moving to cloud services and implementing data analytics is high, the HHS budget has decreased. To help control costs, infrastructure spending at agencies like CMS and FDA is moving more into centralized, hybrid cloud-based environments. It also is shifting away from development, modernization and enhancement funding to steady state funding, which is becoming a tends across the government and a major contributing factor to HHS’s move to the cloud.
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Army Lays Out Plan to Shutter Hundreds of Data Centers
An 88-page directive designed to spur further data center consolidation has been issued by the Secretary of the Army, Eric Fanning. As Federal News Radio notes, the directive lays out “highly detailed orders to three-and-four star generals in the Army’s headquarters and functional and geographic commands, telling them precisely what must be done to close 60 percent of the service’s 1,200 data centers by the end of 2018 and 75 percent by 2025.” The end objective is to move the vast majority of the Army’s systems to one of three environments: the Defense Information Systems Agency’s enterprise computing centers, commercially-run cloud services or a handful of regional Army Enterprise Data Centers (AEDCs) that the service will continue to own and operate.
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SolarWinds’ Joe Kim: Federal IT Professionals Should Protect Networks Through End-User Device Monitoring
Federal information technology (IT) professionals should work to protect agencies’ IT systems amid the increasing number of laptops, mobile phones and other devices used on government networks. In a GCN article by Joe Kim, senior vice president and global chief technology officer at SolarWinds, he cited a recent SolarWinds survey that found that 84 percent of federal IT professionals believe the expectation to support users that seek to connect to government networks through their personal devices is higher than it was a decade ago. He outlined ways they can protect those networks from unauthorized devices and bring-your-own-device programs.
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