Sunday, June 3, 2012

Office 365 Government Community Cloud

There was a big announcement this week for Office 365 and for our Federal Customers. Office 365 now has a US Government Community Cloud -
What does this mean? On top of providing industry standards for privacy and security such as ISO 27001, SAS70 Type II, EU Safe Harbor, HIPPA, etc., Microsoft will be providing a FISMA certified cloud environment that is segregated to US Government organizations.
It is important to know that the Office 365 Multi-tenant cloud is just as secure as the Office 365 US Government cloud however there is not a “one size fits all” solution. US Government agencies just have different policies they must to adhere to and having US Government only cloud allows them to move forward. For instance, there are different US Federal background checks of personnel that are required.
Here are some other notes you should be aware of:
  • Right now, this cloud is targeted to US Government agencies with a .GOV or .MIL domain extensions. As we already know data is segregated between customers, but there is an additional layer of segregation for government only customers.
  • The ITAR controls are not available on the US Government Community Cloud. ITAR is only available for Office 365 Dedicated which also FISMA security controls.
  • Purchase of the US Government Community Cloud is done through an EA.
  • Pricing of the Government Community Cloud is the same as the Multi-tenant cloud with additional government discounts; contact your account executive for details.

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