Level 3 has been tasked by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to deliver a set of local area network (LAN) managed services inside the National Capital Region (NCR).
Delivered through the Washington Interagency Telecommunications System (WITS) 3 contract, Level 3 will provide a host of services including equipment for network design, engineering, monitoring and management to 60 DHS sites, including its newly consolidated headquarters at St. Elizabeth's.
Level 3 will also deliver a set of managed voice, audio and video conferencing, transport, Ethernet and IP services within the NCR.
In addition, the service provider will offer on-site professional services support at DHS' Network Operations Center (NOC). At the NOC, Level 3 will conduct 24/7 remote monitoring of the network both within the contiguous U.S. and internationally, including all network routers, switches, firewalls, intrusion detection/prevention systems (IDPS), wireless access points (WAP) and private branch exchange (PBX) management.
One of the differences about this contract is it is based on a cloud-based Network as a Service (NaaS) model where Level 3 will handle all of DHS' voice, data and video solutions. Level 3 claims that it will be one of the first service providers to deliver a fully outsourced NaaS solution for a federal government agency.
While still an emerging trend, NaaS uses of Points of Presence (PoPs) that are located near both cloud providers (Level 3, AWS, Google, Rackspace, etc.) and to businesses. With NaaS, DHS will be able to get its own virtual private network (VPN), with the ability to scale up network resources up and down as needed, while providing employees with a LAN-like experience.
Edward Morche, senior vice president of East Region Enterprise and Government Markets for Level 3 Communications, said the company is seeing more public sector agencies embrace the NaaS concept.
"Today, federal agencies are facing increasing pressure to keep pace with explosive demands for actionable data and remote access to information, while also managing significant budget constraints as a result of sequestration," Morche said in a release. "This new operating environment is compelling government IT leaders to think differently and seek outsourced solutions, where previously they may have dedicated internal resources to solving problems we address every day at Level 3."
- see the release
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