A further three data centre providers have been certified under the federal government’s hosting certification framework, doubling the number of vendors able to hold protected-level public sector data.
NextDC, Equinix and Fujitsu secured the coveted ‘certified strategic hosting provider’ listing for two or more of their data centres from the Digital Transformation Agency on Friday.
The trio join Canberra Data Centres (CDC), Macquarie Telecom and Australian Data Centres (ADC), which became the first three providers to be certified by the Digital Transformation Agency in June.
Certified strategic is the highest level of assurance under the framework, and requires data centres and managed services providers to allow the government to specify ownership and control conditions.
The lesser certification is a ‘certified assured hosting provider’ – the minimum buy-in for data centre and managed services providers wanting to host protected-level data or government-wide systems.
All protected-level data and data from whole-of-government systems is now required to be stored in either certified assured or certified strategic data centres.
NextDC has had all of its operational data centres – Perth 1 and 2, Sydney 1 and 2, Melbourne 1 and 2, Brisbane 1 and 2 and Canberra 1 – certified as strategic.
Equinix, meanwhile, had eight facilities certified – CA1, SY3, SY4, SY5, SY6, SY7, PE2 and ME4, while Fujitsu had its Western Sydney and Homebush data centres certified.
The DTA has also expanded the number of CDC and Macquarie Telecom facilities that are considered certified strategic.
CDC now has all nine of its facilities certified – H1, H2, H3, H4, F1, F2, EC1, EC2 and EC3 – and Macquarie Telecom has two – IC4 and IC5.
ADC has had all its data centres certified strategic since June.
Panellists on the government’s data centre arrangement – or ‘direct’ providers – were the first to become eligible to apply for certification under the DTA framework earlier this year.
Other 'indirect' providers that host government data like cloud service providers will be able to apply for certification under a second phase, which is expected to take place from next month.
Welcoming the endorsement, Equinix Australia’s managing director Guy Danskine said the certification scheme is needed to ensure “clear and transparent” outsourcing arrangements.
He added that Equinix has “been a data centre provider to Commonwealth and state governments for many”, with “densely connected, highly secure facilities in key metros”.