DIGITAL 21 STRATEGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE. Government s Cloud Computing Programme

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1 For discussion Paper No. 10/2012 on 22 November 2012 Purpose DIGITAL 21 STRATEGY ADVISORY COMMITTEE Government s Cloud Computing Programme This paper updates Members on the latest developments and upcoming plans for the Government s Cloud Computing Programme. Background 2. The Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) formulated a Pan-government IT Strategy (the Strategy) in 2010 with a view to maximising the synergy and cost-effectiveness of the information technology (IT) plans of bureaux/departments (B/Ds). Under the Strategy, OGCIO has planned to re-provision the central IT facilities in building the Government Cloud environment to - (a) adopt, on an incremental basis, cloud computing for the provision of e-government services; (b) develop a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) portfolio of government applications/services that are readily amenable to the Cloud service approach; and (c) establish the Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) capabilities in the Government coherently to provide the shared service platforms, infrastructure and IT capacities to support this SaaS portfolio. 3. The Government s Strategy for Cloud Computing Adoption was presented to Members on 22 March In the discussion, OGCIO outlined the action plan, anticipated benefits, considerations and proposed way forward for the progressive adoption of cloud computing in Government. This has served as the blueprint for subsequent developments of different cloud computing initiatives.

2 Adoption of Cloud for Enabling the Next Generation of Public Services 4. During the past year, OGCIO has embarked on a number of initiatives for enabling cloud adoption in the Government for the provision of public services. Architecture Model 5. We have formulated an architecture model for the Government Cloud environment, which comprises the following three elements: (a) (b) (c) "in-house private cloud" owned and operated by the Government; "outsourced private cloud" comprising facilities dedicated to the Government in secure data centres operated by contractors; and "public cloud" provided by contractors offering services for use by the public. 6. For services that do not involve classified data, such as hosting non-sensitive public information or social networking services, they can be deployed on the "public cloud" platform. For those services involving classified data, they will be hosted in the "in-house private cloud" or "outsourced private cloud" platforms to ensure data security. The outsourced cloud model will be generally used for applications that are software package-base and widely available in the market. While for requirements that are specific to the Government (e.g. government procurement), an in-house cloud model will be adopted. Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) 7. In order to gain the first-hand experience in using cloud computing, we implemented a virtualised infrastructure in our Central Computer Centres (CCC) in December The initiative successfully reduces the lead time required to provision computer resources (from 10 weeks to 5 days) and also achieves notable saving in computer resources (20-30%), energy consumption (10-40%) as well as data centre floor space requirement (by 50%). It enables CCC to serve more IT systems within our existing provisions and resources constraints. 8. To take further advantage from the cloud model, we will establish a Government Cloud Platform (GovCloud), which is positioned as

3 a private cloud for the Government for supporting common e-government services. GovCloud will comprise a core infrastructure and a shared pool of computing resources under an outsourced contractual arrangement. The core infrastructure will cover services of data centre, network, security, resilience, backup and load balancing, as well as components of resource virtualisation, provision and metering. The shared pool of computing resources will consist of server, storage and network resources which will be dynamically provided to e-government services based on individual workload demand. 9. We obtained funding support of $242 million from the Finance Committee in June to take forward the implementation of GovCloud. It will support about 30 B/Ds to roll out their electronic information management (EIM) and electronic procurement (e-procurement) services during the coming five years. We issued an open tender in August for implementation and operation of GovCloud, and the tender was closed on 19 October. We target to award the service contract and kick start the implementation by early 2013 with a view to rolling out the GovCloud services before the end of Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) 10. OGCIO has also started to renew our hosting platform for supporting Government-to-Business (G2B) and Government-to-Citizen (G2C) applications provided by different B/Ds based on a scalable design, so that the hosting capacity can be adjusted in response to the actual demands. Under this cloud-enabled platform, shared components like e-payment gateway, messaging firewalls and user authentication services will be made available to reduce the lead time for development of e-government services. 11. OGCIO is now conducting the tender evaluation for the establishment of the platform. We plan to start service rollout by mid-2013 and its capacity will be incremented progressively to support up to 100 additional e-government services. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) 12. Based on the virtualised infrastructure provided by the CCC, we launched the Communal Paper-less Meeting System (an SaaS offering) in May for shared use by participating B/Ds. It aims to reduce the use of paper and enhance the work flow leading to and during meetings. At the same time, OGCIO is also developing a number of core functions and

4 components that will ride on the GovCloud for supporting new e-governments services such as EIM and e-procurement systems. With the use of cloud, it is expected that these services will be made available to B/Ds in a flexible and cost-effective way when the GovCloud is ready in late To pave the way for the adoption of public cloud services in Government, we have also established a procurement arrangement of public cloud services in May for improving the efficiency of B/Ds for acquiring the required service. The procurement mechanism covers mainly SaaS in terms of personal office automation services such as (a) office tools and suites; (b) collaboration; (c) communication; (d) backup and recovery; and (e) e-engagement (i.e. social media), with a view to addressing the needs of different B/Ds. Under the procurement arrangement, B/Ds can acquire public cloud services from a list of 40 service providers with over 300 cloud service options on non-sensitive systems and information. 14. A successful case on the use of public cloud service is the Data.One Portal. It was launched as a pilot project in 2011 for disseminating public sector information (PSI) to the public for value-added services and re-use. With the widespread support of citizens and the industry, the Government has decided to make this PSI initiative a permanent fixture, and more data are now being added for public consumption. It has taken advantage of the public cloud that offers an agile and scalable service, thus avoiding the need for huge initial investments before confirming the business case and user demands. Facilitating Development of the Cloud Industry and Standard 15. Apart from the implementation of the government cloud initiatives, we also see the importance of developing the skills and experience of our IT workforce for the sustainable growth of the industry. With this in mind, we are actively promoting knowledge exchange among local experts and also with Mainland cloud practitioners. Expert Group on Cloud Computing Services and Standards 16. An Expert Group on Cloud Computing Services and Standards (the Expert Group) was established in April drawing expertise from the industry, academia, professional bodies and the Government for driving cloud computing adoption and deployment in Hong Kong, as well

5 as facilitating knowledge exchanges among cloud experts both within Hong Kong and with the Mainland. 17. Three working groups were formed under the Expert Group and several rounds of meetings have been held. It is generally agreed that the initial focus should be put on promotion, development and adoption of best practices on use of cloud services for the local small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). To this end, OGCIO will establish an information portal on cloud computing by the end of this year that will be updated incrementally to include adoption guidelines, success stories, best practices and other references. At the same time, we will collaborate with the Expert Group members in organising training and knowledge sharing events to raise the awareness of SMEs for adoption of cloud services. We have also submitted an application for hosting the ISO/IEC JTC 1/ SC 27 meeting (on IT Security Techniques) in Hong Kong in April Our objective is to further promote the development and adoption of international cloud standards and best practices, in particular in the areas of security, portability and interoperability of data and applications in a cloud computing environment. Hong Kong/Guangdong Expert Committee on Cloud Computing Services and Standards 18. To strengthen co-operation of Hong Kong and Guangdong in promoting the development of cloud computing and formulation of relevant standards and practices, the OGCIO and the Economic and Information Commission of Guangdong Province established the Hong Kong/Guangdong Expert Committee on Cloud Computing Services and Standards (the Expert Committee) in July this year. The Expert Committee was set up under the Hong Kong/Guangdong Expert Group on Co-operation in Informatisation. It consists of 18 cloud computing experts from Hong Kong and Guangdong that provides a platform for the industry from the two places to promote the adoption and development of cloud computing services and standards, as well as to nurture cloud computing talents. The first Expert Committee meeting was held on 9 August in Guangzhou to agree on the priority work areas. The two places will develop their own cloud portals by the end of 2012 of similar look-and-feel for cross-linking with each other. It was also planned to co-organise a Cloud Computing Symposium in April 2013 for exchanging views and ideas among experts from the two places on the opportunities that could be brought about through the use of cloud computing. The next Expert Committee meeting will be held in Hong Kong in early

6 Way Forward 19. The Government will continue to take the leading role in the adoption of cloud computing for improving our service. We will leverage on innovation in cloud technologies to promote ICT to all segments of the community, so as to transform Hong Kong into a digitally inclusive and knowledge-based society. Through active outsourcing arrangements for the GovCloud and the related e-government services implementation, we aim to stimulate the related industry developments for cloud computing. This would be conducive to the growth of different ICT sectors including data centres, service management, security management/audit, project management, system integration, application development and software testing. 20. Taking the facilitator role, we will continue to promote industry standards and best practices, as well as standards adoption among business sectors through active collaboration with different stakeholders from the industry, academia and professional bodies. Our aim is to facilitate cloud adoption by local enterprises (especially SMEs) for improving their operational efficiencies, flexibility in handling business changes, and taking advantage of innovative provisions of cloud services without the need to manage the related complex IT assets. 21. A high-level programme timetable for the major initiatives is given in the Annex. Advice Sought 22. Members are invited to note the progress and advise on the initiatives and plans set out above. Office of the Government Chief Information Officer Commerce and Economic Development Bureau November

7 Annex High Level Programme Timetable Year Major Milestones 2012/13 Launch the Communal Paper-less Meeting System. Establish the procurement arrangement for public cloud services. Implement the first batch of shared services for Electronic Information Management. Establish the Hong Kong Expert Group and the Hong Kong/Guangdong Expert Committee on Cloud Computing Services and Standards. Establish the new hosting platform for e-government applications based on a scalable cloud design. Establish an information portal on cloud computing. 2013/14 Arrange for a Cloud Symposium for raising the awareness of local enterprises for cloud adoption. Launch the GovCloud for hosting common e-government services for shared use by government B/Ds. Launch the e-procurement service for shared use by government B/Ds. Enrich the information portal with adoption guidelines, success stories, best practices and other references. Review the listing arrangements for provision of Government Public Cloud Services. 2014/15 Host the ISO/IEC JTC 1/ SC 27 meeting (on IT Security Techniques) scheduled in April Progressive rollout of respective cloud services to government B/Ds.

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