Security Optimization and Fault-Tolerance in Cloud Architecture (SOFTCloud)

Award Information
Department of Defense
Air Force
Award Year:
Phase I
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Small Business Information
303 Bear Hill Road, Waltham, MA, -
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
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Principal Investigator
(781) 890-1338
Business Contact:
Contracts Supervisor
(937) 429-9008
Research Institute:
Vanderbilt University
Sara B J.D.
Room 937 Baker Building
110 21st Ave South
Nashville, TN, 37203-7203
(615) 322-2631

ABSTRACT: DoD and government information systems need to dynamically and securely share information between different US, allied, and coalition agencies at multiple levels of classification and need-to-know. As the amount of data available to intelligence analysts continues to increase greatly, DoD and government agencies are showing increasing interest in cloud computing platforms. Cloud computing not only allows users fast and efficient access to vast amounts of data, but also supplies a framework for powerful distributed applications that can help analyze the data in a timely, actionable manner. However, the most advanced cloud computing systems use public deployments, which do not factor in advanced confidentiality, privacy, and trust issues inherent in confidentiality and need-to-know. Moreover, cloud computing systems are also prone to cascading and propagating errors, and do not presently meet the DoD"s stringent reliability requirements. In order to make cloud computing a viable and popular platform for confidential DoD/IC systems, Infoscitex (IST) proposes Security Optimization and Fault Tolerance in Cloud Architecture (SOFTCloud), which offers a robust suite of security, privacy, and fault-tolerance improvements to cloud infrastructure. SOFTCloud is designed to ensure need-to-know, prevent cascading failures, and protect against attacks on data pedigree. BENEFIT: SOFTCloud"s infrastructure improvements, such as proactive fast failover and backup resource overbooking, prevent cascading failures by isolating anomalies where they occur and rapidly fixing these anomalies. SOFTCloud"s primary-backup replication consumes fewer resources than traditional (active-active) replication while delivering comparable performance. Thus, SOFTCloud supports more end users, balances loads better across applications and users, and makes cloud computing tenable for resource-constrained environments. SOFTCloud"s hierarchical data management system ensures need-to-know in the cloud and prevents targeted attacks. Additionally, SOFTCloud"s robust digital watermarking prevents the cloud from being used for malicious purposes and ensures data pedigree against cropping, scrambling, ambiguity and unauthorized removal attacks. There is a widespread need for SOFTCloud in military, government, and commercial markets. SOFTCloud"s key military and government application is in sharing data and applications across service branches (Air Force, Navy, Army, Marines) and government agencies (e.g., FBI, CIA, DHS). Data and applications may also be shared with coalition forces (UK, Australia, etc.) as well. Commercial applications include improvements on cloud infrastructure in e-commerce, as well as making the cloud tenable for high-security and high-privacy data used in the healthcare and banking industries.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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