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“For a cloud in the Federal sector, they need to always ask the question of do I need the FISMA level of compliance, how am I going to achieve that, and how much does my cloud solution really automate that for me?” says Herb VanHook.

Moving to cloud computing can be challenging for any organization. This is especially true for federal agencies that face stringent security and regulatory requirements that are often specific to each agency. Join us as we talk with Herb VanHook, vice president in the Office of the CTO at BMC Software about federal agencies and their use of private clouds.






Herb VanHook is a vice president in the Office of the CTO at BMC Software, with a particular focus on the technology impacts and opportunities presented by cloud computing models.  He has worked in strategic, corporate development, and business planning functions since joining BMC in 2005. Previously, he held several executive positions at industry analyst firm META Group (now Gartner, Inc.) including executive vice president and research director, and last serving as META’s interim president and chief operating officer. He has more than 30 years of experience in information technology – across operations, development, support, and management – including positions at IBM, Computer Associates, and Legent Corporation.




  1. Herb we’ve done a few podcasts together on cloud computing. This is a part of the industry that’s undergoing some fairly rapid evolution.  How have things changed since we last talked last year related to cloud computing and the Federal Sector?
  2. In your paper, you mention that private clouds may be more suited to federal cloud computing needs. Let’s go over some of the key benefits of a private cloud.
  3. Federal agencies have to meet a bunch of security requirements that are contained in the Federal Information Security Management Act, or FISMA. What kind of challenges does a cloud environment represent in terms of meeting these myriad security requirements?
  4. It seems it could be tough to stay compliant with all the regs... can a cloud solution really be a cost-effective way to get the job done and meet all the requirements?
  5. Isn’t it true that one benefit of a cloud is sharing the cost burden across several customers? Can a private cloud have shared features among federal agencies?
  6. How does increasing workforce mobility play into this?
  7. Anything else you’d like to leave with our listeners?









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