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AWS’ high-security GovCloud heads to the Eastern U.S.

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Amazon Web Services is spinning up its second set of data centers for government customers in the United States, this time in the Eastern U.S. The US-East region will provide cloud services that conform to government security and compliance regulations in data centers that are closer to Washington, D.C.

It’s a move by the cloud provider to offer government-oriented services closer to federal customers. AWS already serves agencies including the Department of Veterans Affairs, General Services Administration, and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Overall, the region announced today will be AWS’ 20th worldwide. Each region includes a set of availability zones, which are made up of one or more data centers.

The new GovCloud US-East region, which the company expects to be available next year, builds on AWS’ existing GovCloud region on the West Coast, which launched in 2011. Broadening the geographic reach of its data centers is important for AWS’ competition with Microsoft Azure, which already has two government-focused regions available, with another two on the way.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order last month that called for an overhaul of the federal IT regime. The addition of this new set of data centers may help AWS capture some of the resulting business.

The region will be able to support a veritable alphabet soup of rules and regulations, including NIST standards, Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) Moderate and High, Department of Defense Impact Levels 2-4, DFARs, IRS1075, and Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) requirements.

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