DoD to issue commercial cloud policy directive

August 24, 2011

The Department of Defense will soon issue a commercial cloud computing policy, according to agency chief information officer Teri Takai.

“We’re going to be moving in many cases toward a private cloud construct, but we’re thinking about the possibilities for commercial cloud,” Takai told an audience at the annual Defense Information Systems Agency conference, according to Information Week. “One of the things my office is working on is, as we move toward commercial cloud, what does that mean and what do we need from a DoD perspective.”

Takai didn’t give any more details on the actual release of the policy.

Takai also discussed the Army’s new enterprise email system and what it means for other branches of the military. The Army’s system is built in the Defense Information Systems Agency’s private cloud. She said she would like to see others use it if they see value in it.

“Remember that enterprise email doesn’t necessarily mean that everybody goes to DISA. We have to get to a common identity management structure, we have to get to a common directory structure, we have to be able to collaborate. That’s really the infrastructure that’s critical here. We’re working with the Navy right now to say, ‘What does that look like for Navy?’ My preference is to work through the technical details to get to our end objective, because when you do that, you don’t have to dictate. Otherwise, if I dictated something, I’m going to be the bad guy every time somebody’s BlackBerry doesn’t work. That doesn’t get you to the end objective.”


This week in the cloud

August 18, 2011

Two big stories this week in the cloud computing arena being covered by Federal News Radio.

Two firms protest GSA’s email cloud RFP

The General Services Administration’s $2.5 billion email-as-a-service contract is under protest. The two vendors filing the pre-solicitation protests said GSA’s requirement to have a government-only cloud is a “restrictive specification” and therefore not allowed under federal acquisition rules. Federal News Radio’s Jason Miller reports GSA is continuing to evaluate offers while it waits for a decision by the Government Accountability Office, which is expected by Oct. 17.

Army cloud email a ‘pathfinder’ to enterprise services

After being on hold for the past month, the Army on Tuesday resumed the migration of its 1.4 million email users around the world to the cloud. Federal News Radio’s Jared Serbu reports, Army leaders are now aiming to have the entire migration completed by March of next year. The Army sees this as its starting point for greater use of the cloud. Once the email migration is complete, Mike Krieger, the Army’s deputy chief information officer, said his agency plans a new wave of enterprise services enabled by a more unified network, including collaboration tools in the cloud.

DoD’s cloud e-mail plot thickens

May 5, 2011

Just how many Defense Department employees will eventually be using a cloud-based e-mail service depends who you ask.

Maj. Gen. Ronnie Hawkins, the Defense Information Systems Agency’s vice director, told reporters Tuesday, selling the Navy and Air Force on its cloud-based email system is a matter of when, not if. However, Hawkins admits, “If you talk to the services, it’s if. We’re in those negotiations with all of them right now. The ‘ifs’ are contingent on the pricing and the delivery of the capability.”

Federal News Radio’s Jared Serbu reports all eyes are on the Army’s transition to the DISA cloud, and decisions by the other agencies will likely be made based on the success or failure of the Army’s move.

So far, the Army has transferred 20,000 of its 900,000 users to the cloud. Army chief information officer Mike Krieger says the Army is stepping up its transition timeline and, with the help of a new tool, will transition approximately 1,000 users a night into the new DISA system.

However, the Army’s migration to the DISA cloud was dealt a potential setback by Congress (also on Tuesday).

The House Armed Services Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee cut funding for the Army’s email project in its markup of the 2012 budget by 98 percent until a business case analysis of the program can be completed.

The bill must still pass the full House and Senate to become law.


Enterprise email could pave way for single DoD sign-on

DoD to set new path for IT acquisition

Latest cloud news from Federal News Radio

March 26, 2011

Federal News Radio spoke with the FBI and the Army about their various uses of cloud this week. Listen to the interviews by clicking the links below.

Part 2: Fulgham says secure mobility will change the FBI

In a two-part interview with agency chief information officer Chad Fulgham, Federal News Radio talks about the various ways the FBI is currently using the cloud. Fulgham says he’s a big fan of federal CIO Vivek Kundra’s ideas for cloud and data center consolidation. He explains where the agency might go next in the cloud.

For Army, network tops modernization priorities

New Army CIO Lt. Gen. Susan Lawrence says her organization’s migration to the cloud is going well. So well, in fact, the Army intends to migrate more people into a cloud email system, including the Department of the Army headquarters. Lawrence said she’ll be looking for help and advice from industry to make these migrations as easy as possible.

Cloud, cloud, everywhere there’s cloud

January 30, 2011

Wow. So much news about cloud, so little time. Good thing we have this blog, right?

Federal News Radio was busy covering news about cloud computing this week. We’ve gathered all of those stories here for easy access.

  • Army weeks away from enterprise e-mail rollout
    The Army will begin migrating employees to its new cloud-based e-mail system starting February 15. Federal News Radio reporter Jared Serbu reports testing for the Army’s new e-mail is almost complete. The Army expects the change will mean a significant savings in software licensing.

  • Behind the USDA cloud
    The cloud services offered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture have become quite popular among other federal agencies. Federal Tech Talk host John Gilroy talks with Jim Stevens, Acting Deputy Chief Information Officer for Business, Finance and Security about what the agency offers and how your agency can compare security of the various cloud options out there.

  • Exclusive: OMB uses budget to set cyber guidelines
    The administration’s recently announced cloud-first policy was one of several governmentwide provisions specifically mentioned in the annual IT budget passback guidance. In his exclusive report, Federal News Radio reporter Jason Miller says the “guidance also instructs agencies to consider the technologies that have been approved under the FEDRamp process.”

  • Microsoft announces new cloud computing option
    Microsoft has made its customer-relationship management application available online. The cloud version will be available worldwide beginning Feb. 28, 2011.

  • What will the Google bid protest mean for cloud?
    Off the Shelf host Roger Waldron talks with David Dowd, partner at Mayer Brown, about the Google/Microsoft/Interior Department cloud decision recently handed down. The Interior Department had been ordered to stay an award to Microsoft after a judge ruled it violated the Competition in Contracting Act and rules in the Federal Acquisition Regulations. Waldron and Dowd discuss the potential implications for agency requirements development and acquisition planning.