Cloud

IBM passes FedRAMP muster

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IBM's SmartCloud for Government platform has achieved certification through the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, the government's standardized approach to cloud security.

The Nov. 7 provisional authority to operate approval from the FedRAMP Joint Authorization Board makes IBM a more attractive cloud services provider and validates its SmartCloud for Government offering to a growing market of potential federal customers.

"FedRAMP certification by the JAB provides an overarching validation of the robust security IBM's cloud offerings provide. Our commitment to innovation around security and reliability played a key role in IBM achieving FedRAMP compliance," said Anne Altman, general manager of IBM's US federal business. "IBM's efforts to make the cloud secure extend beyond the current requirements. Our research teams are exploring the next generation of cloud security and are committed to bringing further innovation to the government in this area."

IBM is the tenth provider to achieve FedRAMP compliance.

The FedRAMP JAB has granted seven other cloud providers provisional authority to operate: Akamai, AT&T, Autonomic Resources, CGI Federal, Hewlett-Packard, Lockheed Martin and Microsoft.

Meanwhile, the Health and Human Services department bestowed FedRAMP certification on Amazon Web Services' GovCloud and US East/West offerings, while the Agriculture Department certified its own National Information Technology Center. (See the full list of approved providers.)

FedRAMP certification is a necessary step all government cloud service providers will inevitably have to take, and IBM's approval parallels the company's commitment to diversify its technical offerings. It launched SmartCloud for Government in 2010, and recent acquisitions, including the purchase of Softlayer for $2 billion, have beefed up Big Blue's cloud offering.

About the Author

Frank Konkel is a former staff writer for FCW.

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