Looking Forward: Trustworthy Computing


When Bill Gates announced the Trustworthy Computing Initiative in 2002, he recognized that we needed to change both our processes and culture if we were to make fundamental changes in our products. To ensure that occurred, a centralized group was given responsibility to drive the initiative forward. At the 10 year milestone in 2012, a decade of progress was noted in a number of ways; a chief one being the … Read more »

Cybercrime, Data Protection, and Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)


Most people are familiar with the concept of an arms race. In the world of cybersecurity, this phrase is also in use. A cybersecurity “arms race” typically refers to escalating responses when one party creates a threat, and then a counter-measure is created to meet the new threat head on, resulting in a new baseline which then requires ever more sophisticated attacks in order to be successful. For better or … Read more »

Protecting Customer Data in Our Cloud through Microsoft Azure

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Last month, Microsoft published helpful guidance for IT Professionals looking to maximize the protection of their data using the tools and technologies available in the Azure platform and related services for encryption, access control and other aspects of data security.  This paper, entitled “Protecting Data in Microsoft Azure” explores key areas that should be considered when using either the platform (PaaS), infrastructure (IaaS) or a hybrid database solution.  Read more … Read more »

Measure Twice, Cut Once, With RMA Methodology

I’ve been beating our drum for a while now about the inevitability of failure in cloud-based systems. Simply put, the complexities and interdependencies of the cloud make it nearly impossible to avoid service failure, so instead we have to go against our instincts and actually design for this eventuality. Once you accept this basic premise, the next question is how exactly do we need to change our design processes? The … Read more »

Customer Spotlight: BLK Super Specialty Hospital


Delivering great Healthcare becomes a reality when the whole team knows what is going on with the patient.  How are some Hospitals connecting all of the various practitioners, caregivers and medical services throughout the patient’s entire course of medical treatment?  Many are turning to Cloud Services to ensure information flows seamlessly and all aspects of the Hospital stay are connected optimally to enable quick, accurate and safe medical care. BLK … Read more »

Designing for Failure: The Changing Face of Reliability


I’ve written about reliability and resilience before, but the topic is so important it’s worth revisiting again, using an example from the real world I think you’ll appreciate. Imagine the pressure the architects and engineers were under when they designed and built the Channel Tunnel connecting England to France via rail. The so-called “Chunnel” would have to transport — safely —millions of people a year at speeds over 160 kilometers … Read more »

Strengthening encryption for Microsoft Azure customers

In July, we published a blog post which talked about the advancements Microsoft had made in encryption for Outlook.com and OneDrive to further increase the security of our customers data.   Today, Microsoft Azure has taken additional steps toward our commitment to protecting customer data with the announcement of encryption improvements for Microsoft Azure guest OS.    The encryption improvements, which apply to Microsoft Azure cipher solution for hosted guest virtual machines, … Read more »