Cloud Security

AWS Wins Potential $10B NSA Cloud Contract

Amazon Web Services has won a potential $10 billion cloud computing contract from the National Security Agency, Nextgov reported Tuesday.

According to the report, the contract awarded to Amazon’s cloud subsidiary appears to be part of the NSA’s effort to update its GovCloud platform, the intelligence community’s classified data repository.

In February 2020, John Sherman, then chief information officer of the IC, announced NSA’s plans to issue a solicitation for the effort, also known as the Hybrid Compute Initiative, to help the agency address its massive processing and analytical requirements.

Microsoft challenged the NSA contract award by filing a bid protest with the Government Accountability Office on July 21. GAO is expected to decide on the protest by Oct. 29.

The award marks the second multibillion-dollar contract the IC has awarded for cloud computing services. In November, the CIA awarded AWS, Google, IBM, Microsoft and Oracle positions on the potential 15-year Commercial Cloud Enterprise contract, which could be worth “tens of billions” of dollars based on the agency’s 2019 procurement documents.

The latest award comes as intelligence, defense and other federal agencies continue to advance modernization efforts.

Ensono surveyed public sector leaders for the Cloud Clarity report and found that 71 percent of respondents said they use a combination of public and private cloud platforms. Fifty-six percent of respondents said they consider security as a top factor in selecting a cloud service provider.

“We see more government organizations utilizing both private and public cloud services, as well as a mix of legacy tools, that can be tailored to the specific needs of each sector or department. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution or public cloud provider for the public sector. The desire for multi-cloud solutions isn’t exclusive to the federal government either, as we see state and local agencies also utilizing a mix of private and public cloud,” Clint Dean, vice president of state and local government and education at Ensono, told GovCon Wire.

Spotlight

Other News
Cloud Infrastructure Management

The Manufacturing Sector Experiences More Attacks in the Cloud than Any Other Industry

PR Newswire: | January 19, 2024

Netwrix, a cybersecurity vendor that makes data security easy, today revealed additional findings for the manufacturing sector from its survey of 1,610 IT and security professionals across more than 100 countries. According to the survey, 64% of companies in the manufacturing sector suffered a cyberattack during the preceding 12 months, which is similar to the finding among organizations overall (68%). However, it turned out that the manufacturing sector experiences more cloud infrastructure attacks than any other industry surveyed. Among manufacturing companies that detected an attack, 85% spotted phishing in the cloud compared to only 58% across all verticals; 43% faced user account compromise in the cloud as opposed to 27% among all industries; and 25% dealt with data theft by hackers in the cloud compared to 15% for organizations overall. "The manufacturing sector relies heavily on the cloud to work with their supply chain in real time. This makes their cloud infrastructure a lucrative target for attackers — infiltrating it enables them to move laterally and potentially compromise other linked organizations, as happened to one the world's top meat processing companies. Credential compromise or malware deployed via a phishing email is just the beginning of the attack," says Dirk Schrader, VP of Security Research at Netwrix. "The attack surface in the cloud is always expanding, so it's critical for manufacturing companies to adopt a defense-in-depth approach," adds Ilia Sotnikov, Security Strategist at Netwrix. "First, they must rigorously enforce the principle of least privilege to limit access to sensitive data, which ideally includes just-in-time access to eliminate unnecessary entry points for adversaries. They also need to gain deep visibility into when and how critical data in the cloud is being used so that IT teams can promptly spot potential threats. Finally, they need to be prepared to minimize the damage from incidents by having a comprehensive response strategy that is regularly exercised and updated." To learn more about security trends, check out the complete 2023 Hybrid Security Trends Report. About Netwrix Netwrix makes data security easy. Since 2006, Netwrix solutions have been simplifying the lives of security professionals by enabling them to identify and protect sensitive data to reduce the risk of a breach, and to detect, respond to and recover from attacks, limiting their impact. More than 13,500 organizations worldwide rely on Netwrix solutions to strengthen their security and compliance posture across all three primary attack vectors: data, identity and infrastructure.

Read More

Cloud Security

DAS42 Announces Subscriber Analytics Solution on the Snowflake Data Cloud

DAS42 | December 12, 2023

DAS42, a leading data consultancy, today announced a new solution, Subscriber Analytics. By bringing together the data experts at DAS42 and the power of Snowflake’s Media Data Cloud, Subscriber Analytics is built to solve the myriad of challenges subscriber-driven businesses face when digesting and analyzing the millions of data points collected daily. “We are thrilled to announce our Subscriber Analytics solution, in collaboration with Snowflake,” said Tom Stentiford, Chief Delivery Officer at DAS42. “We’ve created a solution that’s instrumental in driving descriptive and predictive insights into business-critical subscriber-based metrics around customer churn and retention, financial performance and modeling, acquisition, and other areas. In a competitive market, we’re setting our customers up for success when it comes to analyzing user and subscriber data, which cannot be easily leveraged without the right tools.” Whether it’s a lack of consumer data for the product team or the abundance of data from various marketing channels, subscription-driven businesses are overwhelmed and need a way to bring disparate data sources into one holistic data platform and a single source of truth. With the Subscriber Analytics solution, leveraging the Snowflake Data Cloud, leaders can drive faster, more informed business decisions, resulting in an increase in subscriber engagement and, ultimately, improved subscriber retention. “Subscriber Analytics from DAS42 and Snowflake is instrumental in customer churn prevention, revenue forecasting, and financial modeling,” said Frank Cittadino, Former CTO of Zayo. “By partnering with DAS42, everyone from our executive team to our engineers experienced measurable efficiency improvements, leveraging data insights for impactful business decisions. Our collective team saves hours weekly by implementing DAS42’s holistic data governance strategy for our first-, second-, and third-party data.” With Subscriber Analytics, businesses will also be able to: Personalize the customer experience by aggregating subscriber behavior and engagement metrics, helping business intelligence and marketing teams save time, create bespoke campaigns and improve customer relationships. Predict trends with transactional data to inform business strategy and accurately forecast revenue, helping business leaders to make faster and better-informed decisions Prevent customer churn allowing for the organization to keep the subscriber base they have, as well as focus on cross-sell and up-sell opportunities "DAS42's Subscriber Analytics solution leverages the value of Snowflake’s Media Data Cloud to innovate and accelerate data-driven insights,” said Adrian Bolosan, Industry Principal, Media, Entertainment & Advertising at Snowflake. “By seamlessly integrating with Snowflake's unified platform, DAS42's Subscriber Analytics solution empowers customers to unlock the full potential of their data. Together, we are not just providing a solution; we are helping to modernize organizations' approach to data intelligence to help them overcome challenges and achieve success in the initiatives that are most important to their business.” Subscriber Analytics is the latest example of the expertise provided by DAS42 and Snowflake, helping subscriber-driven businesses to unlock the true power of data and create more impactful experiences for subscribers and users alike. ABOUT DAS42 DAS42 is a premier data and analytics consultancy with a modern point of view. We specialize in solving some of the most complex business challenges for the world’s most successful companies. As a Snowflake Elite Partner, DAS42 crafts customized strategies that create a single source of truth and enable enhanced and faster decision-making. DAS42 has a presence across the U.S. with primary offices in New York City and Denver. Connect with us at das42.com and stay updated on LinkedIn. Join us today on our journey to help you realize the possibilities of transforming your business through data and analytics.

Read More

Cloud Security

Observer Platform Innovations From VIAVI Enhance Visibility Across Users, Applications and the Cloud

PR Newswire | January 12, 2024

Viavi Solutions Inc. (VIAVI) (NASDAQ: VIAV) today announced significant enhancements to the Observer Platform allowing IT teams to further maximize network availability, productivity and compliance. The enhancements include critical new capabilities in End-User Experience (EUE) scoring, digital certificate analysis, application identification, Unified Communications (UC) support, and Azure traffic visibility through NSG flow log analysis. The VIAVI State of the Network study revealed enterprises' top challenges in managing their networks. With a majority of enterprise applications hosted in the cloud, fewer than 1% of organizations say they are satisfied with network visibility. Problem domain isolation – pinpointing issues across network, server, application, or client domains ­– remains one of the biggest challenges for NetOps teams. End-user experience is the highest ranking KPI. And nearly half of teams spend between 10 and 20 hours per week troubleshooting UC platforms. The latest Observer release, v18.17, addresses these challenges to improve reliability of networks in meeting organizational objectives. Major new enhancements include: EUE Scoring Updates. Observer's patented EUE analysis now provides deeper insight into each problem domain – network, server, application or client – clearly showing individual scores and associated deductions, making it easy to understand what is contributing the most to performance degradations. Traffic Visibility for Azure and AWS. With the introduction of NSG flow log support, Observer adds insight and visibility for Azure environments equivalent to the existing capabilities for AWS using VPC Flow Logs. As Microsoft does not natively support packet extraction, flow visibility is essential for troubleshooting issues within complex Azure environments. Enhanced Application Recognition. Through added Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) and Application Identification (AppID) capabilities, the Observer Platform now recognizes thousands of specific business and non-business applications natively without having them embedded or hidden within HTTP or HTTPS. UC Call Visualization. Observer is now the only platform in the industry to transform both packet and flow data into intuitive, actionable visualizations that follow the journey of calls through the network infrastructure and identify the location and root cause(s) of poor UC performance. Digital Certificate Analysis. Running servers with non-compliant or expired certificates is a risk, especially if affected hosts and services are public facing. Certificate analysis enables a proactive approach to take timely action, prevent negative outcomes, and safeguard networks and reputation. "Applications are now distributed across private data centers, multiple public clouds, and edge locations, yet many companies fail to upgrade their network monitoring and management solutions to keep pace with these highly complex environments," said Bob Laliberte, Principal Analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group. "VIAVI has recognized this shift and responded by providing comprehensive visibility across these distributed, heterogenous environments. The Observer platform has evolved to support these new environments and its emphasis on end-user experience should appeal to enterprise customers looking to accelerate their transformation, enabling greater operational efficiency and ensuring positive end-user experiences." "In partnership with our customers, we have leveled up performance and threat visibility and developed a powerful set of capabilities that provide insights where they are needed most," said Chris Labac, Vice President and General Manager, Network Performance and Threat Solutions, VIAVI. "Our patented End-User Experience Scoring can now be used by virtually the entire IT team to effectively identify, prioritize, and remediate business-impacting issues. Our UC visualizations are now the best in the industry. New DPI and Azure capabilities round out a release that we're thrilled to deliver. Our focus continues to be not on delivering more KPIs, but delivering more clarity, actionable information, and business value." About VIAVI VIAVI (NASDAQ: VIAV) is a global provider of network test, monitoring and assurance solutions for telecommunications, cloud, enterprises, first responders, military, aerospace and railway. VIAVI is also a leader in light management technologies for 3D sensing, anti-counterfeiting, consumer electronics, industrial, automotive, government and aerospace applications.

Read More

Cloud Storage

VNET Inks Strategic Partnership with Shandong Hi-Speed Holdings Group Limited

VNET Group, Inc | January 01, 2024

VNET Group, Inc. a leading carrier- and cloud-neutral internet data center services provider in China, announced that it has entered into a strategic cooperation agreement (the "Agreement") with Shandong Hi-Speed Holdings Group Limited ("SDHG," 00412.HK), an important overseas investment and financing as well as emerging industrial holding platform of Shandong Hi-Speed Group. Pursuant to the Agreement, SDHG and VNET will leverage their respective resources and strengths to develop renewable energy projects in northern China. This partnership aims to jointly build low-carbon, secure and highly-efficient renewable energy system, aligning with the national strategy "East Data, West Computing." Furthermore, both parties will join hands to build innovative computing power network infrastructures encompassing data center, cloud computing and big data to promote the low-carbon and high-quality development of IDC services. "We're confident of the synergy that SDHG and VNET are going to create through the partnership," said Mr. Josh Sheng Chen, Founder and Executive Chairman of VNET. "As VNET continues to execute its growth strategy and capitalize on the booming digital economy, the partnership with SDHG will help us to gain a wealth of resources in the infrastructure and renewable energy space. We look forward to collaborating with SDHG in a variety of green energy initiatives to advance toward our carbon neutrality targets and meet surging demand for supercomputing and digital transformation across a broader swath of society." Jianbiao Zhu, Executive Director of SDHG, commented, "We are excited to explore more synergies with VNET to capture the evolving demand driven by AI, leveraging our strength in traditional infrastructure and VNET's capability in new infrastructure backed with its high-power density deployments. As VNET's largest strategic investor, SDHG is pleased to work with Josh and the management team, and leverage its domestic and overseas resources to support the ongoing expansion of VNET's core IDC business to scale up business for a sustainable growth." About VNET VNET Group, Inc. is a leading carrier- and cloud-neutral internet data center services provider in China. VNET provides hosting and related services, including IDC services, cloud services, and business VPN services to improve the reliability, security, and speed of its customers' internet infrastructure. Customers may locate their servers and equipment in VNET's data centers and connect to China's internet backbone. VNET operates in more than 30 cities throughout China, servicing a diversified and loyal base of over 7,000 hosting and related enterprise customers that span numerous industries ranging from internet companies to government entities and blue-chip enterprises to small- to mid-sized enterprises. About Shandong Hi-Speed Holdings Group Limited As a company listed in HKEX, Shandong Hi-Speed Holdings Group Limited ("SDHG") is an important overseas investment and financing as well as emerging industrial holding platform of Shandong Hi-Speed Group. Adhering to the concept of "conduct compliance prudentially, develop steadily and healthily" and leveraging on the unique advantages of Hong Kong international financial center in terms of market, financing, and talents, SDHG is committed to becoming an excellent industrial investment group with a foothold in Hong Kong, an international perspective and connection between domestic and overseas markets for achieving effective integration of resources.

Read More