A measly 0.5 per cent of federal government’s IT spend across all agencies is allocated to purchasing public cloud services, a number minister for cities and digital transformation, Angus Taylor, says is “way too low”.
“It’s about $60 million, which is not enough. We spend about $700 million a year buying hardware,” Taylor said at the Tech Leaders forum on Sunday.
Taylor said that moving government to the public cloud is a priority, an effort boosted by Vault Systems and Sliced Tech earlier this month becoming the first cloud providers to have services approved by the Australian Signals Directorate’s CCSL program for use with classified government information.
The companies have services certified for use at the ‘protected’ level added to the government’s Certified Cloud Services List, maintained by the ASD and based on Information Security Registered Assessors Program assessments. Previously CCSL-listed services from the two companies were only approved for use with unclassified information.
“This [moving to the cloud] is a priority for the year alongside the governance structure and benchmarks for a cloud transformation. As always, and this is the new philosophy, is that we get started with small exemplars – the two protected cloud providers,” Taylor said.
Taylor added that several agencies – such as the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) and Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet – are in the process of moving to or are already using public cloud services.
Taylor would not be drawn on government targets for public cloud spend over the coming years.
“I am not going to give a number but it should be a hell of a lot higher than it currently is. We are moving offices onto the cloud, they basic parts of government can move quickly. The bigger, more customised applications, obviously that’s a longer process, that’s not going to happen overnight.
“But where we build new services, we should be looking at cloud.”
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Follow Byron Connolly on Twitter: @ByronConnolly