AT&T and IBM Collaborate to Deliver Cloud Based on Private Networks

AT&T and IBM announced a business agreement to deliver a “network-enabled” cloud service that uses private networks rather than the public Internet. The companies are combining AT&T virtual private networking, new technology from AT&T Labs, and IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+ cloud capabilities to create what they say is a faster and more secure shared cloud service. 

Targeted to Fortune 1000 companies globally, the service will be offered in early 2013 as a new option for clients who are deploying cloud solutions that demand high levels of security and availability.

“As more organizations realize that cloud can be secure, easily managed, and a key part of their business strategy, cloud will quickly evolve as a tool for innovation rather than just for infrastructure,” says Erich Clementi, senior vice president for IBM Global Technology Services. “We believe this new service from two recognized leaders in cloud computing provides a compelling way for large organizations to exploit cloud’s transformational power.” 

When customers of the new service connect to IBM cloud computing resources across AT&T’s virtual private network, the technology tightly integrates the security protections of both, enabling customers to quickly and reliably shift information or applications between their own data centers or private clouds, and this

new cloud service. For example, a financial services company using the new service could move and manage critical customer data between its and IBM's cloud data centers without the data ever leaving the security protections of the virtual private network.

AT&T’s new technology dynamically allocates networking resources to computing resources, automating functions that are often performed manually. This allows the network and compute resources to rapidly scale or contract in tandem to support the fluctuating demand on systems that an online retailer might experience before, during and after the holiday buying season; or that a large employer might experience before, during, and after their annual employee health benefits enrollment period. 

A key element of the cloud service is IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+, an IBM Infrastructure-as-a-Service optimized for mission-critical, enterprise workloads. As a managed and hosted cloud environment, it offers many advantages of a private cloud – such as choice of dedicated physical servers and storage – but also adds the scalable flexibility of a public cloud. Customers using the new service will have access to IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+’ s range of secure managed services and be able to run processes in both public and private cloud models. 

Other features of the new cloud service include committed service-level agreements (SLAs) aligned to business and usage requirements to increase accountability for response time and availability, as well as more than 70 automated built-in security functions; and security extended to wired and wireless devices authenticated to the customer’s virtual private network.

For details on AT&T's cloud offerings, go here.

For more information about cloud offerings from IBM,visit