Cyber Security

Microsoft’s UK data centres for Azure and Office 365

13th Sep 2021 | 4 min read

Microsoft’s UK data centres for Azure and Office 365

Organisations within the UK are adopting cloud technologies at a rate that’s rising significantly. In a 2023 survey by PwC, 78% of UK business leaders have adopted the cloud across most or all of their core business areas.

Due to this, the cloud data storage market is growing rapidly. And Microsoft data centres are at the centre of promoting cloud storage.

We explore the history and benefits of Microsoft’s UK data centres further in this blog.

The history of Microsoft’s UK data centres

Before 2016, cloud computing contracts with Microsoft were not possible for highly-regulated UK industries such as healthcare, national defence and public sector were not possible. This was due to a variety of strict regulations specifying that the data must be stored within the UK and not housed at a data centre in Europe.

In 2016, Takeshi Numoto – the then Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Cloud + Enterprise – announced that Microsoft Azure and Office 365 are now available at data centres in the United Kingdom in London, Durham and Cardiff, as well as an underwater DataCentre in Orkney.

Microsoft Azure is now used by the Department of Education, HM Revenue and Customs as well as the NHS Blood and Transplant. Many councils across the UK also use Microsoft Azure’s cloud data storage.

In April 2019, Microsoft announced that its Azure regions in the UK had doubled in size, growing over 1,500% since the UK data centre launch in 2016.

To add to this, Microsoft UK CEO Cindy Rose explained that Microsoft are now very well placed to support the Digital Transformation of organisations throughout the country as a result of their on-going commitment to principles of security, privacy, transparency, compliance and availability.

The benefits of Microsoft’s UK data centres

With Microsoft now having data centres in the UK, there are plenty of benefits for organisations using Azure and Office 365.

Uninterrupted service

Data centres are the backbone of cloud computing, housing physical servers and networking equipment that power cloud services.

Microsoft’s UK data centres provide businesses with unparalleled access to powerful cloud services compliant with local legislation, ensuring efficient data management and uninterrupted service availability.

Data compliance and security

The Microsoft Azure data centres in the UK instil much higher trust levels when it comes to data security. These are primed to protect client servers from disturbance with tiered access, CCTV and more. This gives any business enterprise grade IT security.

The data centres also meet the data compliance regulations under the EU and UK’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Easily accessible data

Data centres in Microsoft Azure in the UK are always available. As such, your business data is in your country and physically accessible if you wish to maintain your servers.

Microsoft Azure’s data also has multiple connectivity links, ensuring you always have access to your business data and applications.

Faster-running Microsoft applications

Microsoft customers who are based in the UK also benefit from faster-running apps as the Microsoft Office 365 applications can now operate without the delay of sending data overseas.

Local data centres reduce latency, resulting in faster data retrieval and improved application performance for businesses operating within the UK.

Getting started with Microsoft Azure and Office 365

With Microsoft’s secure UK data centres, Office 365 and Azure are safe options for any organisation to implement.

Office 365 is a comprehensive suite of cloud-based productivity tools and services provided by Microsoft. It encompasses applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and collaboration tools, such as Teams and SharePoint.

Azure is a comprehensive cloud computing platform provided by Microsoft, offering services such as virtual machines, databases, AI and analytics, enabling businesses to build, deploy and manage applications and services in a scalable and flexible environment.

Depending on the needs of your business, both can help you build a robust infrastructure for your business that fuels performance and productive working.

To find out more about Azure or Office 365, visit our designated pages:

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