Government contractors and the federal customers they support are moving in mass to cloud solutions for meeting their growing security and compliance risks. By and large, these organizations are choosing one of the most secure and robust platforms available - Microsoft 365 Government Community Cloud High (GCC High).
Where is GCC High located?
Microsoft GCC High is built on Microsoft Azure Government within 8 dedicated government data centers. Azure Government is currently certified to FedRAMP High, and the entire suite of GCC High services is undergoing audits to upgrade its certification to FedRAMP High. For many entities interested in GCC High, the foundation of Azure Government is especially helpful because each Microsoft employee working in those environments is a US Citizen and background checked. This factor is particularly important for companies handling ITAR data.
What is available in GCC High?
M365 GCC High includes many of the same feature sets and products of the commercially available Microsoft 365 (Microsoft 365 Commercial): SharePoint Online, Teams, Exchange Online, OneDrive for Business, etc. However, full parity is not achieved. One notable example is found within Microsoft Teams for O365 GCC High. Though the Office 365 GCC High Pricing is a concern for some, it is one of the securest platforms available in the market. Unlike the Commercial offering of Microsoft 365, Audio Conferencing for Teams US Government does not include dial-in phone numbers and the underlying configuration in Azure Government to enable the capability. A solution is required for direct inward dial through Direct Routing to allow users to create meetings with Teams Dial-in conference numbers.
M365 GCC High can be configured, with appropriate licensing, to be 100% NIST 800-171 compliant. Additionally, Microsoft agrees to support all requirements for DFARS as part of this environment. This environment was previously available only through an enterprise agreement, requiring 500 or more licenses. Through a new program, however, it is now available to all organizations with a requirement to manage CUI/ITAR data or have the DFARS 7012 clause in one of their contracts.
Hope this information gives you a brief outline of Microsoft GCC High.