Having the ability to offer services to the United States government takes more than just signing up on a list and start distributing your product.

This is most especially true when it comes to handling more sensitive information. That makes getting on that list of authorized vendors even more challenging.

Recently Microsoft announced that they have gained the Provisional Authority to Operate their Azure Government Services within federal agencies here in the U.S.

That work and effort by Microsoft to meet the high level requirements for the federal government has resulted in them earning these three key authorizations:

Information Impact Level 4 DoD Provisional Authorization by the Defense Information Systems Agency: This provisional authorization allows all US Department of Defense (DoD) customers and mission partners to leverage Azure Government for controlled unclassified information—data requiring protection from unauthorized disclosure and other mission-critical data including data subject to export control, privacy, or protected health information, or data designated as For Official Use Only, Law Enforcement Sensitive, or Sensitive Security Information. DoD Authorizing Officials can efficiently use this Provisional Authorization as the basis for their authorization decisions for mission owner systems using the Azure cloud.

International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) readiness: This announcement allows customers and partners who store and process International Traffic in Arms Regulations regulated data to leverage Azure Government to conform with these data requirements. Azure Government meets the strict location and personnel requirements required under ITAR by restricting access to US persons and storing data in the US. ITAR commitments are made only in an EA Amendment, please contact your representative for more information.

FedRAMP High Provisional Authorization: Following the successful completion of the FedRAMP High Pilot in March, this provisional authorization allows federal agencies to leverage Azure Government to securely process high-impact level data—that is, data that, if leaked or improperly protected, could have a severe adverse effect on organizational operations or, assets, or individuals.

Microsoft's CTO for Microsoft Federal, Susie Adams, said that these accreditations show the value of the Microsoft cloud when it comes to protecting customer data:

"Microsoft remains committed to delivering the most complete, trusted cloud platform to customers. This accreditation helps demonstrate our differentiated ability to support the unique needs of government agencies as they transition to the cloud."

Read more about these achievements:

But, wait...there's probably more so be sure to follow me on Twitter and Google+.

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