Software giant Microsoft is using Thales’ technology to protect its Rights Management service – Azure.
Thales said that Microsoft is using its nShield hardware security modules.
Rights management, said Thales, was largely handled by infrastructure within enterprises. But shifting to a cloud model allows more accessibility and ease of use.
Microsoft thinks that by using an nShield MSM to allow the transfer of individual critical keys more security will be available to companies.
Microsoft partner management Dan Plastina said that because it was working with Thales its customers can generate and upload master keys to a cloud based HSM.
According to research outfit Information Services Group (ISG), the public sector outsourcing market in the UK has taken a massive hit in the first half of the year. The ISG Outsourcing Index for EMEA found just €2 billion of outsourcing activity in the UK for the first half of the year. Last year the market was worth €4.6 billion.
However, Britain still leads the way when it comes to public sector outsourcing in Europe. The whole EMEA market for the first six months of was just €2.3 billion compared to €3.1 billion last year. In other words, the UK accounted for five sixths of all public sector outsourcing in EMEA this year.
The ISG figures track all outsourcing contracts with an annual value of €4 million or more. They include IT contracts, business process outsourcing, back office processes, but IT dominates with more than two thirds of all contracts. Public sector outsourcing now accounts for 41 percent of all outsourcing activity in EMEA, with Britain in a clear lead.
The top 15 companies winning these lucrative contracts are Accenture, AECOM, Arqiva, Arvato, BT, Capgemini, Capita, CSC, Grupo Ferrovial, HP, Interserve, QinetiQ, Serco, Thales and Tieto.
Labour MP Clive Betts has expressed concern that the ICT behind the Universal Credit system are not up to scratch – and that that he has heard evidence that fraud detection is still at an early stage in development.
In a report from the Communities and Local Government Committee, Betts said the Department for Work and Pensions has to “provide swift assurance that the transition to Universal Credit will not leave the benefit system vulnerable to fraud”. This could prove particularly embarrassing for the Coalition as Conservative politicians have claimed the reforms are partly to prevent fraud.
The first trial will begin late this month in Greater Manchester, the BBC reports..
Director of cybersecurity at Thales UK, Ross Parsell, warned that MPs are “absolutely right” to flag their concerns.
“Although the Public Sector Network (PSN) will provide a secure back-end communications infrastructure, a question mark still remains over whether the government will be able to verify, manage and protect the identity of claimants is still under question,” Parsell said.
Parsell said that although it is possible to apply for a passport or a new driving licence online, the citizen is paying cash to the government – to date we haven’t seen a system that works the other way round, and this “is where the risk likes”.
“If a high percentage of transactions are fradulent, the government could come under severe pressure,” Parsell said. “With 1.56 million people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance at a minimum of £56.25 a week, just that element of welfare presents a £4.56 billion fraud risk over the course of a year”.
Parsell suggested a possible answer would be using a chip & pin system for authentication.