Air Force personnel, manpower applications fully migrated to cloud

  • Published
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

The Air Force Digital Transformation Activity culminated a three-year effort when it closed its Data Center July 9. This effort resulted in the migration of all applications, services, equipment and manpower to a virtual cloud provider.

The migration to the cloud hosting services saves money, replaces outdated hardware, increases information security and reduces system vulnerabilities, preventing data loss to unauthorized entities. Applications such as Air Force Promotions System, Virtual Military Personnel Flight, AFPC Secure, etc., are all now hosted completely on the cloud.

“The cloud provides better security with more flexibility and less redundancy,” said Greg Parsons, Air Force A1 Plans and Integration director. “It provides the ability to modernize servers and the associated software required to operate the infrastructure, faster than the previous data center allowed at a fraction of the cost.”

More than 42 systems were migrated to the virtual data center following extensive testing to ensure compatibility with the new operating system.

“The new servers are not physical servers but a virtual version that can be upgraded quickly, which decreases security vulnerabilities,” said Gary Trautmann, Platform Operations Division chief. “Technological debt is not incurred with the continuous need to upgrade physical systems. We can patch and upgrade systems near-real-time and do not have to purchase new hardware since the servers are virtual.”

The Data Center closure is part of the federal data center consolidation initiative focused on the evaluation of governmental information technology investments for more modern technology. In addition, the cloud provider is certified to protect Department of the Air Force information and is accredited by the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program and Defense Information Systems Agency, which are both accreditation bodies for the government and DoD.

The FedRAMP is a U.S. government Program Management Office that provides a standardized approach to security assessment, authorization and continuous monitoring for cloud service providers – ensuring the highest security standards are met. DISA will provide an additional level of security controls to ensure CSPs are adhering to all DoD data guidelines in accordance with DoD policies.