FCO Services

FCO Services Government - Secure Cloud Hosting

FCO Services Government Cloud Hosting is a dynamic UK hosted Cloud platform delivering Virtual Hardware, Virtual Machines, storage and network capacity for OFFICIAL, SECRET and TOP SECRET. Providing flexible hosting powered by VMware, Microsoft Azure, Cisco and other leading Cloud technologies.


  • Create secure and effective IT platforms
  • Secure Environment - end to end security of the platform
  • Reliable - resilient platform operated from two UK datacentre locations
  • Flexible - Platform can be tailored to individual customer requirements
  • Cross-Boundary - Platform accessible from the PSN and Internet
  • Virtual Configuration up to 24vCPUs and 192GB RAM
  • Windows Server and CentOS open source operating systems
  • High Availability - SLA to 99.9% for core infrastructure
  • Registered Participant Status for the EU Code of Conduct (Datacentres)


  • Government Secure - In Government, for Government by Government
  • Trust to support Government and Citizen data security
  • Peace of mind from our global SOC monitoring
  • Flexible connectivity, PSN, private and internet
  • High quality service delivery to ITILv3/ISO 20000 best practices
  • Continual asset protection from cyber and physical threats
  • Supportive of Public Sector ICT green objectives
  • Reduced costs through shared services technology
  • Hosting technologies that match industry standard skill sets
  • SC \ DV Cleared staff


£0.14 per virtual machine per hour

Service documents

G-Cloud 10


FCO Services

Elizabeth Arneill

01908 515789


Service scope

Service scope
Service constraints Cloud Hosting is based on Windows Server and CentOS open source operating systems.
System requirements
  • Windows Server or CentOS open source operating systems
  • Licence supplied by FCOS or to be provided by customer.

User support

User support
Email or online ticketing support Email or online ticketing
Support response times 30mins for Priority 1 and 2 calls
User can manage status and priority of support tickets Yes
Online ticketing support accessibility WCAG 2.0 A
Phone support Yes
Phone support availability 9 to 5 (UK time), Monday to Friday
Web chat support No
Onsite support Yes, at extra cost
Support levels Support available from 24x7x365, Fully supported by our Global Support Centre.

Standard support response times 30mins for Priority 1 and 2 calls.
Support available to third parties No

Onboarding and offboarding

Onboarding and offboarding
Getting started The description of the onboarding process, hand over and usage is described through FCO Services comprehensive user documentation.

All onboarding documents are openly available, please contact us via fcoservices.customercontactcentre@fco.gov.uk or via FCOServices.gov.uk
Service documentation Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • ODF
  • PDF
End-of-contract data extraction Data extraction is available from the platform before contractual end through and agreed secure mechanism.

Customer data can be extracted at any time, during the term of the agreement, across the network using a remote administrative access device. If a physical copy of the data is required, then the customer would need to raise a Service Request via the FCO Services’ Global Support Centre Service Desk. The data would be made available to the customer within five working days and would be presented as a virtual HDD, such as a VMWare vmdk file or files, on appropriate media. All physical data extraction/removal is a chargeable service, priced at time of request.
End-of-contract process Off boarding is available as an additional cost. To off board VMs, the customer should raise a Service Request via the FCO Services’ Global Support Centre Service Desk. The VMs would then be turned off and removed by FCO Services. Please note that if a VM has been available for use in a calendar month, the customer will be billed for that VM.

Using the service

Using the service
Web browser interface No
Command line interface Yes
Command line interface compatibility
  • Linux or Unix
  • Windows
Using the command line interface Administer existing VM's and infrastructure.


Scaling available No
Independence of resources FCO Services assign performance profiles to groups of resources to manage demands across the service. Alerting of service resources is delivered to the Operational control centre team.
Usage notifications Yes
Usage reporting
  • Email
  • Other


Infrastructure or application metrics Yes
Metrics types
  • CPU
  • Disk
  • Memory
  • Network
  • Number of active instances
  • Other
Other metrics Service status
Reporting types
  • Regular reports
  • Reports on request


Supplier type Not a reseller

Staff security

Staff security
Staff security clearance Conforms to BS7858:2012
Government security clearance Up to Developed Vetting (DV)

Asset protection

Asset protection
Knowledge of data storage and processing locations Yes
Data storage and processing locations United Kingdom
User control over data storage and processing locations Yes
Datacentre security standards Supplier-defined controls
Penetration testing frequency At least once a year
Penetration testing approach ‘IT Health Check’ performed by a CHECK service provider
Protecting data at rest Physical access control, complying with another standard
Data sanitisation process Yes
Data sanitisation type
  • Deleted data can’t be directly accessed
  • Hardware containing data is completely destroyed
Equipment disposal approach A third-party destruction service

Backup and recovery

Backup and recovery
Backup and recovery Yes
What’s backed up
  • Files and Data
  • Virtual Machines
  • Databases
Backup controls Base backup configuration is defined at service commencement. Changes to this schedule permanent or ad -hoc are available via Change Requests. Users can initiate their own Application backups.
Datacentre setup Multiple datacentres
Scheduling backups Users contact the support team to schedule backups
Backup recovery Users contact the support team

Data-in-transit protection

Data-in-transit protection
Data protection between buyer and supplier networks
  • Private network or public sector network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • IPsec or TLS VPN gateway
  • Bonded fibre optic connections
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)
Data protection within supplier network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • IPsec or TLS VPN gateway
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)

Availability and resilience

Availability and resilience
Guaranteed availability High Availability - SLA to 99.9% for core infrastructure.
Approach to resilience Available on request.
Outage reporting Email alerts are provided through Service Delivery Manager contact points.

Identity and authentication

Identity and authentication
User authentication
  • Limited access network (for example PSN)
  • Dedicated link (for example VPN)
  • Username or password
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels Limited access over dedicated link, enterprise or community network, assured by independent testing of implementation
Access restriction testing frequency At least once a year
Management access authentication
  • Public key authentication (including by TLS client certificate)
  • Limited access network (for example PSN)
  • Username or password
Devices users manage the service through
  • Dedicated device on a government network (for example PSN)
  • Dedicated device over multiple services or networks
  • Any device but through a bastion host (a bastion host is a server that provides access to a private network from an external network such as the internet)

Audit information for users

Audit information for users
Access to user activity audit information Users contact the support team to get audit information
How long user audit data is stored for At least 12 months
Access to supplier activity audit information Users contact the support team to get audit information
How long supplier audit data is stored for At least 12 months
How long system logs are stored for At least 12 months

Standards and certifications

Standards and certifications
ISO/IEC 27001 certification No
ISO 28000:2007 certification No
CSA STAR certification No
PCI certification No
Other security certifications Yes
Any other security certifications HMG IA Standards

Security governance

Security governance
Named board-level person responsible for service security Yes
Security governance certified No
Security governance approach ISO/IEC 27001
Information security policies and processes Security policies are based on ISO27001

Operational security

Operational security
Configuration and change management standard Supplier-defined controls
Configuration and change management approach FCO Services will follow the defined ICT Operations Change Process. The Change Management process will ensure that IT and the business can be kept aligned with optimal efficiency and minimal disruption, re-work and risk by means of the consistent and effective management of the necessary changes needed to maintain alignment to ISO9001. The FCO Services will be under management of the standard ICT Operations Configuration Management policies ensuring configuration is visible and understood by all parties.
Vulnerability management type Supplier-defined controls
Vulnerability management approach Regular vulnerability scans are conducted and remediation activity conducted. Identified vulnerabilities are added to the risk register if not remediated.
Protective monitoring type Supplier-defined controls
Protective monitoring approach Protective monitoring is aligned to HMG Good Practice Guide 13 (GPG13).
Incident management type Supplier-defined controls
Incident management approach FCO Services manages Incident Management according to ITIL V3 framework, this distinguishes between Incidents (Service Interruptions) and Service Requests (standard requests from users, e.g. password resets).

Secure development

Secure development
Approach to secure software development best practice Supplier-defined process

Separation between users

Separation between users
Virtualisation technology used to keep applications and users sharing the same infrastructure apart Yes
Who implements virtualisation Supplier
Virtualisation technologies used VMware
How shared infrastructure is kept separate Secure segmentation including VLAN, assured by independent testing of implementation.

Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency
Energy-efficient datacentres Yes


Price £0.14 per virtual machine per hour
Discount for educational organisations No
Free trial available No


Pricing document View uploaded document
Skills Framework for the Information Age rate card View uploaded document
Service definition document View uploaded document
Terms and conditions document View uploaded document
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