MDS Technologies Limited

Secure Cross Domain Guard (Elevated)

The Secure Cross Domain Guard Service provides application level security preventing data loss and malware infection when sharing information. The service protects email, web service, web browsing, file sharing and network management communications. Policy tailoring meets an organisation’s specific sharing needs, supporting user compliance and managing information sharing risks.


  • Self-defending security architecture aligned to CESG architectural patterns AP4/AP14
  • Securely share business information: email, web, network management and files
  • All traffic scrutinised using deep content inspection and integrated AV
  • Protects Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 information
  • Policy enforcement based on Government Security Classification labels
  • Policy whitelisting or blacklisting based on identified filetypes
  • Separate policies for inbound and outbound information
  • Provides secure cross domain Gateway functionality for information sharing
  • File transfer utilities and applications simplify service integration
  • Service helpdesk support and named account manager provided


  • Secure cross domain information sharing with customers, suppliers and partners
  • Deal with less trusted organisations without compromising your sensitive data
  • Malware protection and data loss prevention reduces information security risk
  • Enhanced security operations for remediation and response to attack/compromise
  • Enhanced defence for your critical systems and sensitive information
  • Demonstrable compliance with policy, standards and legislation
  • Simple integration with existing capabilities improves efficiency
  • Automatic AV signature updates minimises vulnerability window for known attacks
  • Users held to account for their information sharing actions
  • Policy definable at organisation, department, team and individual levels


£3850 per instance per month

Service documents

G-Cloud 9


MDS Technologies Limited

Adrian Plummer

01225 816280

Service scope

Service scope
Service constraints Customer responsibilities include:
• Provision of compatible infrastructure to host the service.
• Responding to policy conflict alerts.
• Control and management of access and responsibilities for end users.
• Ensuring only OFFICIAL or OFFICIAL-SENSITIVE data is passed to the service.
Customers not taking up a third party day-to-day management service, or professional services management, are also responsible for:
• Backing up configuration and syslog data.
• Recovery from back-up.
• day-to-day administration tasks.

Third Line vendor support is available: Monday-Friday, 08.30-17.30, UK time, excluding bank & public holidays.
System requirements Management machine with Windows 10 and compatible browser required

User support

User support
Email or online ticketing support Email or online ticketing
Support response times Response times are based on the priority assigned to the incident:
P1 - 15 minute response, 4 working hour resolution (6 hours if logged outside of working hours)
P2 - 15 minute response, 6 working hour resolution
P3 - 30 minute response, 3 working day resolution
P4 - 60 minute response, 7 working day resolution
User can manage status and priority of support tickets Yes
Online ticketing support accessibility None or don’t know
Phone support Yes
Phone support availability 24 hours, 7 days a week
Web chat support No
Onsite support Yes, at extra cost
Support levels MDS Support is based on the priority assigned to the incident:
P1 - 15 minute response, 4 working hour resolution (6 hours if logged outside of working hours)
P2 - 15 minute response, 6 working hour resolution
P3 - 30 minute response, 3 working day resolution
P4 - 60 minute response, 7 working day resolution
Support available to third parties Yes

Onboarding and offboarding

Onboarding and offboarding
Getting started As part of on-boarding we will:
• Deploy the Diode software, and work with your organisation to set up and configure the service
• Test the service to ensure information exchange is correctly configured and that reports and alerts are working as expected

We offer two methods of on-boarding, based on the service needs:
• A standard templated configuration based on a fixed application
• An optional tailored configuration of secure cross domain information sharing requirements which meet your specific risk profile
• We work with your organisation to determine your specific cross domain information exchange policy requirements as they differ from the standard templated configuration including any specific associated logging and compliance requirements

All service on-boarding is delivered in line with MDS' ISO9001 Certified Quality Management System processes. Documentation is provided on policy configuration. Training is available in accordance with our pricing model.
Service documentation Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • ODF
  • PDF
  • Other
Other documentation formats
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Webinars/Webex
  • Presentations
End-of-contract data extraction The only customer data held within the service is the configured policy data and the Diode log data. If the customer requires MDS to make this data available then we will charge a single day at our professional services rates (see Pricing) for off-boarding activities.
End-of-contract process As part of off-boarding we will:
• Provide access to the log data held within the service at the point of decommissioning, if required.
• Decommission the Deep Secure software.
• Delete all accounts and data.
• Recover all licensed software.
We charge a single day at our professional services rates (see Pricing) for off-boarding activities.

Using the service

Using the service
Web browser interface Yes
Using the web interface Customers can undertake configuration of the service through a browser interface. Supported browsers are limited to Internet Explorer 10+, Firefox and Chrome.
Web interface accessibility standard None or don’t know
How the web interface is accessible Users interact with the service using their standard desktop capabilities. As such no specific accessibility capabilities are provided by the service.
Web interface accessibility testing N/A
Command line interface Yes
Command line interface compatibility Linux or Unix
Using the command line interface Customers can perform configuration and management tasks form the command line.


Scaling available No
Independence of resources Each Data Guard instance is implemented within a UKCloud Virtual Machine (VM). Virtual Machines are managed within Virtual Data Centres, with an overarching customer account providing administrative security. Segregated between accounts is managed by VMware vCloud Director as part of the cloud infrastructure.
Usage notifications Yes
Usage reporting Email


Infrastructure or application metrics Yes
Metrics types
  • CPU
  • Disk
  • Memory
Reporting types
  • Regular reports
  • Reports on request


Supplier type Reseller providing extra features and support
Organisation whose services are being resold Deep Secure

Staff security

Staff security
Staff security clearance Conforms to BS7858:2012
Government security clearance Up to Security Clearance (SC)

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 Complies with a recognised standard (for example CSA CCM version 3.0)
Penetration testing frequency Never
Protecting data at rest Physical access control, complying with another standard
Data sanitisation process Yes
Data sanitisation type
  • Explicit overwriting of storage before reallocation
  • 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 Data Guard, through an underlying Virtual Machine image
Backup controls Guard backups are taken nightly by UKCloud as part of the underlying infrastructure.

Off site backups are site resilience are available at an additional charge.
Datacentre setup
  • Multiple datacentres with disaster recovery
  • Multiple datacentres
  • Single datacentre with multiple copies
  • Single datacentre
Scheduling backups Supplier controls the whole backup schedule
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
  • IPsec or TLS VPN gateway
  • Other
Other protection within supplier network UKcloud uses CAS-T circuits between their data centres. Circuits are encrypted within the Elevated platform.

Availability and resilience

Availability and resilience
Guaranteed availability 99.9%
Approach to resilience This service is hosted on a resilient, single site, Cloud platform provided by UKCloud. Where a customer requires an additional level of resilience we can implement a dual site solution using UKCloud's second data centre. The additional IaaS charges will be passed through to the Customer. Additional instances of the boundary control components can also be purchased to provide the desired level of resilience.
Outage reporting Outages are reported in syslog and/or SNMP data provided to customers.

Identity and authentication

Identity and authentication
User authentication Public key authentication (including by TLS client certificate)
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels Administrator access is authenticated using username and password over TLS . Support channel access is authenticated when a contact is made by checking customer details align with Deep Secure's records for supported customers.
Access restriction testing frequency At least once a year
Management access authentication Username or password
Devices users manage the service through
  • Dedicated device on a segregated network (providers own provision)
  • 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 have access to real-time audit information
How long user audit data is stored for Less than 1 month
Access to supplier activity audit information Users have access to real-time audit information
How long supplier audit data is stored for Less than 1 month
How long system logs are stored for Less than 1 month

Standards and certifications

Standards and certifications
ISO/IEC 27001 certification Yes
Who accredited the ISO/IEC 27001 LRQA
ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation date 09/12/2015
What the ISO/IEC 27001 doesn’t cover MDS' risk assessment process has highlighted that the following two areas of ISO27001 are out of scope:
14.1.3 Information Systems: Protecting Application Services Transactions
14.2.7 Information Systems: Outsourced Development
ISO 28000:2007 certification No
CSA STAR certification No
PCI certification No
Other security accreditations Yes
Any other security accreditations
  • Cyber Essentials Plus
  • PSN Connection Certificate

Security governance

Security governance
Named board-level person responsible for service security Yes
Security governance accreditation Yes
Security governance standards ISO/IEC 27001
Information security policies and processes We follow the policies and procedures laid down in ISO 27001:2013 standard. In particular, our Information Security Management System contains all of the policies that support our security management approach. Our Information Security Policy provides the highest level policy statements which is supported by a comprehensive Acceptable Use Policy which all staff must sign before being granted any system/Network access. Additional policies cover key areas including Security Incident Management, Management Review, Document Control, Data Protection, Access Control, Business Continuity, Encryption, Patch Management and Auditing.

As part of our Service Implementation Process we carry out a pre-handover security audit to ensure that we have met the required MDS Security standards as well as any specific customer security requirements which have been agreed.

All of the above is supported by an extensive internal and external (UKAS accredited) Audit programme which ensures that we maintain the high level of security standards laid down in our processes.

Operational security

Operational security
Configuration and change management standard Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Configuration and change management approach Configuration and Change management processes are fully aligned to ITIL best practise and documented within our Information Security Management System.

New customer environments are deployed using our scripted deployment tools to ensure a consistent and reliable build. Configuration changes to these environments are closely managed throughout the project to ensure that configuration records are maintained.

All changes to customer environments require both MDS and customer approval. This ensures that customers are fully aware and agree to any work being implemented within their environment.

The MDS Change Advisory Board meets weekly although Emergency Changes can be processed at short notice.
Vulnerability management type Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Vulnerability management approach Our vulnerability management processes are compliant with ISO27001:2013 and supported by a comprehensive Patch Management policy. We undergo regular vulnerability assessments and also continually monitor a number of recognised sources of new vulnerability and threat information as well as any known exploits for them.

Our Patch Management process includes the regular and timely application of patches to software whilst minimising the potential impact of problem updates through testing and evaluation.
Protective monitoring type Conforms to a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v3.0 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Protective monitoring approach MDS can implement a GPG-13 compliant Protective Monitoring solution through our relationship with Assuria. The Assuria Log Manager (ALM) application is a CESG CCTM accredited Forensic SIEM/Log Management Solution. ALM is cloud ready, Scalable, Flexible and provides analysis and real time alerting as well as full compliance reporting.

The ALM architecture allows the collection and management of almost any format and supports a wide range of log standards. Although ALM can work agentless, the installation of an ALM Agent (available for a wide range of platforms) enhances the service with automated log collection, rotation, digital signing and forwarding.
Incident management type Conforms to a recognised standard, for example, CSA CCM v3.0 or ISO/IEC 27035:2011 or SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
Incident management approach MDS’ Information Security Incident Management Policy fully complies with ISO27001:2013 and includes:
• Potential or actual breaches of confidentiality of a company or supported customer information asset, or potential or actual breaches of confidentiality of a supporting asset
• Potential or actual breaches of integrity of a company or supported customer information asset, or potential or actual breaches of integrity of a supporting asset
• Potential or actual interruptions to the availability of a company or supported customer information asset

The Policy applies to all employees, contractors and third party users of MDS information systems, and other related infrastructure.

Secure development

Secure development
Approach to secure software development best practice Independent review of processes (for example CESG CPA Build Standard, ISO/IEC 27034, ISO/IEC 27001 or CSA CCM v3.0)

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 Customer separation is maintained as part of the UKCloud assured cloud platform, which is based on the VMware vCloud Director application suite.

Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency
Energy-efficient datacentres Yes


Price £3850 per instance per month
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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