January 26, 2012
US government intelligence agencies are working toward implementing a joint information technology system, a shared infrastructure that is simultaneously more secure and more open, and they're looking to cloud computing to help point the way forward.
A Bloomberg article cites U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper as saying that "cloud computing will play a major role as the nation's spy agencies work to integrate computer and information systems to share more data securely."
In Washington today, in front of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Clapper discussed cloud computing's "huge potential for achieving savings and promoting integration."
According to the Bloomberg piece:
Intelligence agencies are trying to devise a way of tagging and labeling data to separate more sensitive information about sources and methods used to collect intelligence from the substance that operatives, analysts and officials need. The aim is to allow better information-sharing among traditionally secretive and turf-sensitive agencies without jeopardizing security.
A shared IT system such as this will need to address a unique set of security requirements. In addition to advanced tagging and labeling strategies, there need to be strict audit and accounting protocols to constantly monitor for unauthorized intrusions. Clapper sees these elements coalescing into a workable solution within the next five years.
The Obama administration supports the need for greater privacy measures for sensitive government files. In October, the President established the Insider Threat Task Force to help stop information leaks. In the Executive Order, the President calls for "structural reforms to ensure responsible sharing and safeguarding of classified information on computer networks that shall be consistent with appropriate protections for privacy and civil liberties."
The opening statement of policy doubles as a succinct encapsulation of the challenge at hand:
Our Nation's security requires classified information to be shared immediately with authorized users around the world but also requires sophisticated and vigilant means to ensure it is shared securely. Computer networks have individual and common vulnerabilities that require coordinated decisions on risk management.
In a somewhat controversial move, the White House has also ordered a study to assess the usefulness of commercial satellite imagery to national security.
Researchers from the Suddhananda Engineering and Research Centre in Bhubaneswar, India developed a job scheduling system, which they call Service Level Agreement (SLA) scheduling, that is meant to achieve acceptable methods of resource provisioning similar to that of potential in-house systems. They combined that with an on-demand resource provisioner to ensure utilization optimization of virtual machines.
Experimental scientific HPC applications are continually being moved to the cloud, as covered here in several capacities over the last couple of weeks. Included in that rundown, Co-founder and CEO of CloudSigma Robert Jenkins penned an article for HPC in the Cloud where he discussed the emergence of cloud technologies to supplement research capabilities of big scientific initiatives like CERN and ESA (the European Space Agency)...
When considering moving excess or experimental HPC applications to a cloud environment, there will always be obstacles. Were that not the case, the cost effectiveness of cloud-based HPC would rule the high performance landscape. Jonathan Stewart Ward and Adam Barker of the University of St. Andrews produced an intriguing report on the state of cloud computing, paying a significant amount of attention to the problems facing cloud computing.
05/10/2013 | Cleversafe, Cray, DDN, NetApp, & Panasas | From Wall Street to Hollywood, drug discovery to homeland security, companies and organizations of all sizes and stripes are coming face to face with the challenges – and opportunities – afforded by Big Data. Before anyone can utilize these extraordinary data repositories, however, they must first harness and manage their data stores, and do so utilizing technologies that underscore affordability, security, and scalability.
04/02/2012 | AMD | Developers today are just beginning to explore the potential of heterogeneous computing, but the potential for this new paradigm is huge. This brief article reviews how the technology might impact a range of application development areas, including client experiences and cloud-based data management. As platforms like OpenCL continue to evolve, the benefits of heterogeneous computing will become even more accessible. Use this quick article to jump-start your own thinking on heterogeneous computing.