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Here’s a quick look at just a few of the raft of announcements coming out from Amazon Web Services (AWS) in recent days, including a new offering that will unify scalability across multiple AWS services and the beefing up of security through the acquisition of a threat detection company.

Firstly to the release of AWS Auto Scaling, a new service that will greatly simplify scaling for developers.

Scaling has always been a key issue for cloud computing given the need for users to scale up to meet short-term needs and scale back when that need has been met. Organisations typically use multiple AWS services to build applications, which in turn means there has been a need to ensure that each of the various elements was scaling in line with the application’s requirements.

Essentially the new feature takes the existing auto scaling functionality specific to each of these services and makes them easier to deploy from a single interface.

This will make it less complicated for developers and AWS administrators to manage their cloud resources, since they will no longer need to set up alarms and scaling actions for each resource and each service. Instead, it is case of simply pointing Auto Scaling at the application and selecting the services and resources of interest. The desired scaling option for each one is selected, and Auto Scaling does the rest, helping to discover the scalable resources and then creating a scaling plan that addresses the resources of interest.

Ultimately the new service aims to lower infrastructure costs while also boosting application performance.

Elsewhere AWS has acquired Sqrrl, a threat detection software firm whose products help to analyse a variety of sources through the use of machine learning in order to proactively detect data breaches, malware, insider threats and other attacks.

The company was established in 2012 having been co-founded by former US government security officials and has experienced rapid growth.

A clearly delighted the CEO Mark Terenzoni commented: “We will be joining the Amazon Web Services family, and we’re looking forward to working together on customer offerings for the future.”

And finally, there’s good news for developers who use Amazon SageMaker and have a requirement for PCI DSS compliance in their work.

SageMaker has now joined the growing list of AWS products that have achieved compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).

This means that developers can use the fully managed service to build, train and deploy machine learning models for applications in the AWS Cloud that require adherence to the proprietary information security standard. PCI DSS applies to all entities that store, process or transmit cardholder data and/or sensitive authentication data including merchants, processors, acquirers, issuers and service providers.

Matt Barclay
AWS Business Development Director 

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