I am delighted that Microsoft Azure will be expanding into two new regions in Australia. This increases the number of Azure regions announced across the globe to 42, which is more than any other major cloud provider. Microsoft will become the first major cloud provider to offer regions specifically focused on the needs of the government and their partners in Australia.
The two new regions, available in the first-half of 2018, are intended to be capable of handling sensitive Unclassified data as well as Protected data. Protected is a data classification for the first level of national security classified information in Australia. This is being achieved through a strategic partnership with the Australian-owned firmCanberra Data Centres(CDC). CDC are the preeminent specialist datacenter provider for secure government data in Australia with four modern Canberra-based facilities that hold the accreditations and security controls to handle even Top Secret classified data. Government customers currently using the secure Intra-Government Communications Network (ICON) will be able to directly connect to Azure in Canberra.