Minnesota, USA -August 18, 2011 - On August 16, Amazon announced that it is launching a Cloud service, AWS GovCloud, targeted towards the U.S. Government Agencies who previously were not allowed to use the Cloud due to rules set by the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR). According to the ITAR rule, the government data should only be seen by people in the United States.Until now, the issues on which cloud services were compliant with the law made it difficult for government agencies to switch over. The AWS GovCloud limits accessibility based on location, so it is fully compliant. If each state government switches its data management to the GovCloud, significant amount of money could be saved. However, we also need to remember that there are out-of-country assignments; what are government workers to do then
Undoubtedly U.S. citizens have seen enough budget battles in the recent months to understand the importance of cutting back wherever possible. To avoid these budget battles and government shut-downs, we need to be innovative. Wyoming is the first state to jump on to the Cloud and will be the leader to several state governments to follow. Reportedly it is estimated to save $USD 1 million a year from this point onward.
"Today, over 100 government agencies are taking advantage of AWS and we're excited to continue working with agencies as they implement the Federal Cloud First policy to become more efficient, agile, and innovative through more effective use of technology infrastructure. AWS GovCloud is the next step in that evolution," announced Teresa Carlson, Vice President of Global Public Sector, Amazon Web Services.
Amazon's enthusiasm for innovation comes at a great time. People are losing trust in the state and national government; everyone needs to see anything that could ease the pain in each state's budget. Perhaps it could lead to a rearrangement of funds that could ultimately benefit the people.
The issue of data security will always be an issue whether the government data is in the Cloud or not. Questions still remain on how this data will be managed and shared when any officials need to go overseas. Perhaps the GovCloud will only take effect for the agencies that do not deal with international relations; then again, it is wise to have plans in order for those who could do work overseas at some point.
For many people when they think of the Cloud, they think of music and entertainment services. Now, it is easy to see that everyone will use these services at some point no matter what industry or where they are located. The GovCloud is just one of the first Clouds specifically targeted towards government agencies. Indeed there will be more Clouds customized for all types of businesses in the future.