IBM, AT&T Offer Secure Passage to the Cloud

IBM has offered up a variety of cloud computing options for its customers in recent years. The latest, in tandem with AT&T, brings a security element to the mix. "AT&T and IBM have both been making efforts in cloud services, but haven't yet established a strong marketing position," said Simon Aspinall, chief marketing officer for Virtustream.

After years of chipping away at the cloud computing market, IBM on Wednesday announced that it has teamed up with AT&T to offer secure cloud computing as a service.

The two companies will combine IBM's SmartCloud Enterprise+ with AT&T's virtual private networking service to Fortune 1,000 companies worldwide.

The service will be offered early next year.

The combined offering secures data in motion, integrating the security features of both IBM's cloud computing resources and AT&T's VPN service. This will let users move data or applications between their own data centers or private clouds, and the service.

"This is going to provide clients with an extra level of security because the data leaves their own data center at the company and travels on a protected network tunnel to be processed, and then goes back to them through the tunnel," IBM spokesperson Colleen Haikes told The E-Commerce Times.

Corporate data usually travels over VPNs, but the difference is that the AT&T network "is connected at the code level to the IBM cloud and data is protected the whole way through," Haikes said. "The two companies have worked really closely together over the past 10 years."

AT&T will dynamically allocate networking resources to computing resources. This will let both scale up or down in tandem rapidly to support changes in demand.

The service will be customized to fit customer demand. It will offer service level agreements aligned to business and usage requirements. It will have more than 70 automated built-in security functions, and will extend security to both wired and wireless devices that have been authenticated to the user's VPN.

The IBM-AT&T joint offering "fundamentally reinforces the notion that cloud providers recognize that they can't treat security as a 'nice-to-have' but, rather, need to deliver it as a service, the same as how core computing services are delivered," Urvish Vashi, vice president of marketing at Alert Logic, told The E-Commerce Times.

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IBM, AT&T Offer Secure Passage to the Cloud

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