Thanks to G-Cloud, the once stagnant public sector IT marketplace that was dominated by a small number of large incumbent providers, is thriving. More and more SMEs are listing their assured cloud services on the framework, which is driving further competition and forcing down costs for public sector organisations, ultimately benefitting each and every UK tax payer. But the programme still needs work.
Only 35 per cent of public sector staff are comfortable using cloud-based services according to a survey report published this week.
The UK government has signed a deal with IBM that will see the two parties fund a series of initiatives aimed at expanding cognitive computing and big data research.
The Cloud Industry Forum’s (CIF) code of practice for cloud service providers has been added to the European Commission’s growing list of cloud certification schemes. The move means it passes the EC’s benchmark for service security and reliability.
The US Department of Justice is deploying Box in a bid to improve content sharing and collaboration. The company also said it will shortly receive Agency Authorization to Operate, which means the solution can be deployed across all DoJ agencies.
The US Army is partnering with IBM to deploy a hybrid cloud platform to support data warehousing and data analysis for its Logistics Support Activity (LOGSA) platform, the Army’s logistics support service.
Microsoft, along with nearly fifty other technology civil rights associations and technology firms have signed an open letter to senior members of the US government calling for reform of the Patriot Act, a cause célèbre for Microsoft among other cloud firms in recent years.
HP announced it is working with the European Commission on several pilot cloud implementations in a bid to test how internal and citizen-facing public sector services cloud be moved off legacy platforms into more elastic cloud environments. The move is part of the Commission’s broader efforts to catalyse the use of cloud services in the public sector.
G-Cloud has the potential to offer savings of up to 50 per cent on a like for like procurement and around £23,000 in admin costs alone, said Government Digital Services director and head of the G-Cloud programme Tony Singleton.
Three years after it first proposed such a move the White House has introduced a draft Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights (CPBR) that would give consumers clearer and more guarantees on how personal data is protected by organisations – regardless of the sector those organisations operate in. The draft bill seems to be taking heat from all sides, and if adopted it would bring US policy on privacy protection in the age of big data more in line with the draft legislation in Europe.