Westpac turns to IBM for hybrid cloud

Hosted across two of IBM's Australian datacentres, the bank's new hybrid cloud is expected to speed up service delivery.

Westpac has announced implementing a new offsite hybrid cloud, built and operated by IBM.

According to the bank, the offsite cloud is part of its fully integrated cloud platform strategy, "hybrid-platform-as-a-service", which is expected to allow Westpac to easily deploy applications and deliver new customer solutions to market faster, while "meeting regulatory controls for data protection and privacy".

See also: Commonwealth Bank and Austrac reach AU$700m agreement over anti-money laundering breaches

The cloud is powered by Big Blue in two Australian datacentres, with Westpac saying the new hybrid platform will boast a combination of public cloud and on premises cloud next year.

Westpac CIO Dave Curran said the shift to hybrid cloud brings a "unified agile platform" that he touted as reducing complexity, inefficiencies, and cost. He said that since implementation, service provisioning has gone from 2-4 months to 2-4 hours, and application installation is expected to be reduced from months to hours.

"It has been a big and complex project. To be technically ready to deliver an infrastructure platform of the future is a monumental achievement for Westpac and a testament to the people who worked tirelessly to make it happen," Curran added.

"This is a vital step in our hybrid cloud strategy, vastly accelerating speed to market and continuing to offer customers the service they need, want, and expect."

The hybrid cloud is a core part of Westpac's platform strategy, with other components including Panorama for BT, Customer Service Hub, Payments Platform, Westpac's Digital Platform, and Big Data Platform.

It was also reported this week that Westpac's wealth management arm BT Financial lost customer files when the group undertook a project in 2013 to digitise its hard copy records.

The project involved scanning roughly 38 million pages, and according to The Guardian, while 10,000 files were initially flagged as missing, 8,000 were later found in branches across the country.

The remaining 2,000 were reportedly recreated.

The news follows the Commonwealth Bank of Australia on Friday admitting it had sent over 650 incorrectly addressed internal emails.

For the first half of FY18, Westpac reported AU$4.2 billion in after-tax profit, up 7 percent year on year after spending AU$1.3 billion on transforming the bank over the past 12 months.

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