Digital Realty to Offer Secure Interconnection to Cloud Hosts
Traditional business computing had a stronghold on the security of their employees’ desktop computers and their server closets. Everything was kept on site, so firewalls and their brethren could properly block unwanted access to those systems. Then the emergence of the cloud brought services such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, and Microsoft Azure into the picture. The security of computing moved into untested territory.
Business began to connect their local desktops to software in the cloud. Employees made daily use of local data, cloud-based data, and combinations of both. Soon, third parties such as Digital Realty had to assert some control by providing secure pathways from one end to the other, which is exactly what Digital Realty has done with its new Service Exchange interconnection service. It handles secure connections between end users and their cloud platforms of choice, including those listed above and clouds hosted by telecommunications providers.
To make this possible, Digital Realty has partnered with Megaport, a provider of interconnection services that customers can control through network access on their phones or desktops as well as through the Megaport API. Megaport will handle the actual transport of data through its software-defined network. Digital Realty will handle the onboarding of customers and will manage all customer-facing parts of this relationship.
Both companies stated that they are excited to begin this partnership. Rightly so, they are entering a section of computing that is still grasping for a handhold. It is often not enough, as TMC has noted, for companies to rely on the security of cloud service providers to protect their entire data stream. Even the best-case scenario where a business has complete faith in the steadfastness of its host, the exposure of data in the transfer from user to host could still remain a problem. Malware could enter such a stream. Prying eyes could redirect and scan secret data.
Digital Realty and Megaport want to add an extra layer of security so the pathway of data between nodes is a clear one. Service Exchange works through a single port but allows customers to access multiple cloud hosts through the creation of multiple virtual connections – what Digital Realty calls “virtual cross connects.” Through the Digital Realty online management software, customers can scale their number and scope of virtual connections as they need.
Service Exchange is expected to become available in eight U.S. cities (Atlanta, Ashburn, Va., Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Seattle) by the fourth quarter of this year. It will then seek to expand to more cities in the U.S. and move overseas to Europe and Asia Pacific by the first quarter of 2017.
Edited by Maurice Nagle