Microsoft announced a new U.S. government cloud environment: Office 365 Government Secret Cloud which is currently under review, pending accreditation with targeted availability starting mid-2022.
The new Azure environment is built to support the U.S. Federal Civilian, Department of Defense, intelligence community and U.S. government partners working within the secret enclave.
As workloads have shifted from on-premise to the cloud, it requires Microsoft to work closely with the government to write a secure and trusted infrastructure.
“Governments have an increasing demand on security and importance of protecting highly sensitive workloads across an expensive network of government agencies and partners; it becomes increasingly important to provide government employees with secure, productive, and efficient cloud options to help them achieve their missions,” writes Paul Lorimer, VP, Office 365 Enterprise and Cloud Engineering in a blog post.
Office 365 Government Secret will support Impact Level 6 (IL6) to help meet the full spectrum of government data needs. The new environment will also run the latest enterprise-grade Office 365 government productivity, security, compliance and collaboration applications
Microsoft says it has a comprehensive approach to build, test, onboard and audit products to be compliant with government regulations which will help ensure security and compliance for the environment.
If your organization plans to deploy Office 365 Government Secret Cloud, Microsoft encourages customers to engage with their onboarding teams right away to be prepared for when the environment is authorized for use.
IT admins can work with different groups, such as Microsoft FastTrack, Microsoft Consulting Services and deployment partners to plan out remediation activities for identity, networks, devices, on-premise server upgrades and a pilot plan for migrations.
Microsoft encourages organizations to develop plans early to help ensure environment transition challenges can be addressed and mitigated before a comprehensive rollout.
If you enjoyed this article and want to receive more valuable industry content like this, click here to sign up for our digital newsletters!