In the realm of Sri Lanka's government organizations, the implementation of information systems once demanded dedicated hosting spaces. However, the former approach of establishing individual server rooms on premises proved to be both costly and management-intensive for the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) in the digital era.
In response to these challenges, the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) envisioned the Lanka Government Cloud (LGC 1.0) in 2010. LGC 1.0 successfully centralized hosting facilities, creating a virtual computer environment managed by ICTA, supporting over 100 applications, various e-Services, and 300 websites.
After the introduction of LGC 1.0, challenges surfaced, leading to the need for an upgrade to LGC 2.0:
• Engineering overhead in supporting government organizations.
• Outdated technology from 2010.
• Inability to upgrade storage to meet evolving government entity requirements.
• Expiring hardware of hosted applications.
To tackle these issues, ICTA initiated the planning of Lanka Government Cloud 2.0 in 2016, incorporating more reliable and cutting-edge technologies to offer services such as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Big Data analytics.
The sincere objective was to create a highly available, scalable, and secure private cloud environment for the Government of Sri Lanka:
• Developed a redundant cloud platform using the latest cloud implementations, including IaaS, PaaS, and Big Data analytics.
• Implemented and deployed government information systems within a secure Data Center (Tier 3 ready) for reliable services.
• Onboarded all government-related applications and provided maximum operational infrastructure support.
• Enhanced security measures with firewalls, web application firewalls, and VPN connectivity for users, prioritizing the safeguarding of sensitive information.
This endeavor was approached with humility, recognizing the importance of the role in contributing to the government's technological infrastructure.
The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) acknowledged the pivotal role that ICT could play in enhancing public services for all citizens. Committed to leveraging ICT for public benefit, the government aimed to improve accessibility, decrease hosting costs for businesses, and enhance transparency and accountability.
The primary goal was to establish a highly available, secure, and centrally managed private government cloud. The Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) spearheaded initiatives to promote a digital society and advance the digitization of the economy, with this cloud acting as a facilitator.
LGC 2.0 successfully offered Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) to government institutions, ensuring high availability. Tenants benefited from 500mb VPLS links speed and an innovative setup based on OpenStack technology by Red Hat. This allowed customers the flexibility to oversee Virtual Machines (VMs) and Security Groups, empowering them to manage operational and security aspects according to their specific preferences.
As LGC 2.0 took on this ambitious endeavor, it did so with humility, understanding the crucial role it played in contributing to the government's technological infrastructure and the advancement of a digitally empowered Sri Lanka.