Although they’re one of the most recognizable names in online shopping, Amazon is also building a reputation around their cloud platform and, specifically, service for governmental defense. Originally launched in 2011 with the AWS GovCloud, and later updated with the development of AWS Top Secret East in 2014, their newest offering exists as a server cluster meant for customers in the U.S. defense sector and, more specifically, in the Western U.S.
Providing Defense from East to West
The latest region to their government cloud, AWS Top Secret West was finally unveiled in December 2021. Since it’s physically located more than 1,000 miles away from the first building, and since each building boasts numerous Availability Zones, customers in the U.S. defense sector can benefit from localized services. Not only does this help with potential bandwidth and latency issues, but it’s also helpful for tech support teams and troubleshooting.
A recent blog post by AWS discussed this in further detail by saying: “AWS Regions include multiple Availability Zones. Each Availability Zone consists of discrete data centers with redundant power and networking. They are housed in separate facilities, in locations that are carefully selected to mitigate environmental risks. By using Availability Zones, customers can operate ultra-low latency production applications and databases much more resiliently than would be possible with a single data center.”
Security and Compliance
These availability zones were specifically developed with the latest industry rules, standards, and regulations in mind. With support for more security frameworks than any other cloud provider, and with continuous updates meant to maintain compliance with any updates and revisions, both of AWS’ Top Secret regions meet stringent security requirements.
Providing Security Across All Levels
While AWS’ Top Secret East and Top Secret West facilities are designed to handle sensitive and confidential information of the highest classification at the governmental level, it’s not the first time the company has provided services for the U.S. defense sector.
In 2017, AWS launched the AWS Secret Region. Meant for workloads rated as Unclassified, Sensitive, and Secret, this service filled the gaps that weren’t covered by their Top Secret East service. Now that they have the western U.S. covered, too, AWS is set to make an even bigger impact on the defense industry than ever before.
At the time, a press release issued by Teresa Carlson, Vice President of Amazon Web Services Worldwide Public Sector, shed some light into the mission of their governmental program by saying; “AWS now provides the U.S. Intelligence Community a commercial cloud capability across all classification levels: Unclassified, Sensitive, Secret, and Top Secret. The U.S. Intelligence Community can now execute their missions with a common set of tools, a constant flow of the latest technology and the flexibility to rapidly scale with the mission. The AWS Top Secret Region was launched three years ago as the first air-gapped commercial cloud and customers across the U.S. Intelligence Community have made it a resounding success. Ultimately, this capability allows more agency collaboration, helps get critical information to decision makers faster, and enables an increase in our Nation’s Security.”
New AWS Service to Accommodate Governmental Defense Agencies
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