Virgin signs up for government's 'network of networks'

Virgin Media Business has signed up to support the government's burgeoning Public Sector Network, an initiative to make it easier and more cost-effective for public sector organisations across the UK to procure voice and data connectivity.The 'network of networks' is based on existing public sector networks, of which Virgin is a major supplier.

Virgin Media Business has signed up to support the government's burgeoning Public Sector Network, an initiative to make it easier and more cost-effective for public sector organisations across the UK to procure voice and data connectivity.

The 'network of networks' is based on existing public sector networks, of which Virgin is a major supplier. On Thursday, the company became the second — after Global Crossing — to sign a deed of undertaking to provide a fully compliant network interconnection for PSN.

"We have all worked very hard to get PSN up and running and it is extremely gratifying to see the foundations of the network now firmly in place," PSN programme director John Stubley said in a statement.

In its deed of undertaking, Virgin agreed to launch a Government Conveyance Network (GCN) access layer capability on its network. It has also set up a dedicated PSN business unit and worked with the Hampshire and Isle Of Wight Partnership (HIOW) to create a PSN-style shared network.

Virgin's PSN development chief, Robert Parker, explained to ZDNet UK on Thursday how the company's involvement in PSN could work. "We may have an authority in the South East of England which wants to share an HR platform with another in the North West of England," he said. "We can plug them in at opposite ends of the GCN and offer a level of assurance and performance in a way that's cost-effective and efficient."

Global Crossing and Virgin are at "identical levels of development of their PSN and GCN capabilities", Parker noted.

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