MoD Defence Digital adds Oracle Cloud to MODCloud list of assured providers

Database giant Oracle has been added to the list of providers the Ministry of Defence has endorsed for use by the UK defence community

The UK Ministry of Defence’s technology arm has added Oracle to its roster of assured public cloud providers that are approved to process and store the defence community’s data.

The MoD’s Defence Digital department, set up in 2019 to oversee the delivery of effective IT tools and services to military personnel, is responsible for providing the defence community with access to certified and assured private and public cloud services.

This is through the delivery of its MODCloud initiative, and the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure platform has now been added to the list of providers the defence community can access through it, which also includes Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft

Sara Sharkey, head of MoD Defence Digital application services and DevOps, said the aim of MODCloud is to provide the defence community with the cloud building blocks they need to underpin their wider digital transformation plans. 

“The real opportunity of digital transformation – which includes artificial intelligence, machine learning, internet of things, blockchain and human interfaces – is to embrace data on a scale we’ve never seen before,” said Sharkey.

“Selecting Oracle Cloud Infrastructure within our MODCloud multi-hybrid suite of services offers new technologies that are reshaping how we approach IT and using this information, allowing us to focus on innovation and outcomes for both business and, importantly, people.”

The defence community will be able to access the software giant’s cloud-based infrastructure, business applications and platform services portfolio of products through the initiative, as part of a pan-defence Oracle enterprise agreement.

Richard Petley, senior vice-president and country leader for Oracle UK, said the arrangement will see the MoD join a host of other public sector organisations that are adopting the firm’s cloud services.

“The Ministry of Defence will capitalise on the choice and economic benefits that Oracle Cloud Infrastructure can provide, all of which will help meet challenges that lie ahead,” said Petley.

“It joins a whole host of public sector organisations, such as the Home Office, Western Sussex Family Assist, Lambeth Borough Council, Croydon County Council, the Office for National Statistics and Scottish Water, which are already using Oracle Cloud.”

Read more about Oracle’s cloud strategy

Andrew Sutherland, senior vice-president for technology at Oracle, told Computer Weekly that joining MODCloud is a ringing endorsement for Oracle’s second-generation cloud infrastructure.

The company lifted the lid on its generation two cloud at Oracle OpenWorld 2018, claiming it would offer enterprises better performance, pricing and security than its competitors’ public clouds, while also giving users access to autonomous analytics and database capabilities.

“Our customers, across all industries, have come to us and said Oracle has been there, looking after a lot of our data for a long time, and now it’s becoming much more valuable and [in large] volumes and we need help with that,” said Sutherland. “The answer of course now is in cloud computing.

“It wasn’t obvious the first time around with generation one cloud that we really had the answer to this. The generation one clouds were great for less critical workloads, test and development and everyone learned a lot of from the concepts of pooling resources, and elasticity.

“But the questions of how do we manage large volumes of high-value data efficiently kept coming – and so we responded by creating this Oracle Cloud Infrastructure which we term ‘generation two’ cloud. Candidly, I think we’ve cracked it with the cloud technology here.”

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