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Government Decides to Move Email to Microsoft Exchange

The San Francisco county government recently announced that it has decided to move all email to the Microsoft Exchange Online which is a cloud-based system. This will be a major upgrade to the current systems. Unfortunately during the week of May 9th, 2011, Microsoft Exchange Online fell victim to three outages that significantly affected business email customers across the network.

Government Employees Affected by the Migration

As per the press release from the San Francisco government, over 23,000 employees from 60 departments will benefit from the email migration. Since the governmental community is large and diverse, this investment in information technology has many advantages including decreasing costs and improving productivity. Although Microsoft has already begun the transition, the total migration will occur over 12 months.

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Collaborative Tools

Microsoft Exchange Online delivers an improvement in collaborative and communicative tools such as calendar and email functions in addition to hosted archiving of emails. The city and county government of San Francisco continues to think toward the future and has always leveraged technology to improve all services. This is another example of a highly beneficial upgrade.

Microsoft’s Statement

The Vice President of US State and Local Government at Microsoft followed-up with a statement highlighting the company’s excitement support San Francisco government employees with the tools necessary to be efficient. Further, this transition will help government employees better serve the San Francisco community.

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Benefits of Microsoft Exchange Online

Microsoft was selected due to many factors with the most critical being price. Also, security, functionality and flexibility were concerns, especially with the number of attacks recently hitting major networks. Furthermore, Microsoft boasts a proven track-record of success, features SLA-backed service and can easily integrate with existing infrastructure to minimize downtime.

Migrations from Other Departments

The San Francisco government is not the first area of the government to make the change to cloud-based email system. Several months ago the United States Department of Agriculture began the migration process to Microsoft Exchange. They have seen a major improvement in the email systems.

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If this benefits the taxpayers of San Francisco and California in general, it is an excellent move by the local government. As necessity continues to grow across the country; local, state and federal government divisions will require a secure, more robust systematic infrastructure to operate efficiently. San Francisco is one of few to take the first step and move in that direction.

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2 Comments

  • Avatar for Ghazala Shah Ghazala Shah says:

    Though I agree with you Move Email Owen as far as Western countries are concerned..I totally agree..however in our case the South Asia..the subcontinent..here some people might prefer a company like Microsoft to handle their data needing privacy as compared to the State or some system run by the national authorities..

  • Avatar for Move Email Owen Move Email Owen says:

    I wonder if there’s any dangers of having private corporations manage the country’s most valuable political information and data. If this continues, isn’t there also the potential for conflicts of interest to emerge? Or why is it that the security of a private organization is trusted more than that of the government? I just think that information security is the highest priority of national security and perhaps we should have a larger portion of our defense expenditure dedicated towards developing independent email systems instead of outsourcing them. Just a thought.

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