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Amazon Web Services (AWS) has officially opened its second set of high-security GovCloud datacenters in the U.S.

Amazon’s cloud computing subsidiary announced plans for a government-focused datacenter region on the U.S. East Coast last year, which follows the West Coast GovCloud region that opened back in 2011.

Government focus

Amazon has been going all-in to get government contracts. Having won a $600 million cloud deal with the CIA in 2013, the company is considered the frontrunner to win the U.S. Defense Department’s $10 billion JEDI project, after Google dropped out on “ethical” grounds. Having a datacenter region — one that is built for hosting sensitive data — closer to Washington, D.C. can only help its cause.

Elsewhere, AWS also announced plans to open datacenters in Italy in 2020, which is in addition to other regions that are currently under construction around the world, including Bahrain, Hong Kong, Sweden, and Cape Town, where its first African datacenters are expected to go into operation in 2020.

The Italian infrastructure, which will be based near Milan, will constitute three availability zones and is the company’s sixth cloud region in Europe.

Launched in 2006, AWS gives companies of all sizes access to “elastic” cloud computing capabilities that remove the need for them to operate their own on-site servers. Today, AWS generates more than 10 percent of Amazon’s overall revenue, a figure that could rise sharply if it emerges successful in its bid to win the U.S. Defense Department’s $10 billion contract.


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