What feds can expect from Windows 10

Windows 10 launches today for consumers, but it will be a while before we see an enterprise version. That doesn't mean we can't talk about its features.

While the tech world is charged up Wednesday over Microsoft’s release of Windows 10, enterprise users in the federal space will have to be patient: The company doesn’t expect to issue an enterprise version until the fall.

However, the company is still using today’s wide launch to tease government users about all the things they can expect.

Among the features in Windows 10 that will be available for agencies is an enhanced cybersecurity platform, building on top of tools that have long been available in past versions of Windows. One tool, Enterprise Data Protection, will act similar to a container on a mobile device management platform, giving IT administrators the ability separate personal and corporate data in encrypted sections. It will also prevent corporate data from being copied to other locations, reducing the likelihood of unauthorized access.

Microsoft is also relying on hardware-based security, with familiar features like Secure Boot and Trusted Boot integrated with TPM-approved chips, adding another layer to threat resistance and device security.


The platform is also coming with Device Guard, a feature that ensures signed applications and approved code can only run on devices with clearance.

While some of these features won’t be available until later this year, the entire system is still working to earn a number of government certifications. A Microsoft spokeswoman told FedScoop that the company is in the process of gaining FIPS 140-2 and NIAP/Common Criteria certification, along with a Security Technical Implementation Guide from the Defense Information Systems Agency. Those accreditations should be complete by the time the system is ready for a wider rollout.

Outside of security, Microsoft is also giving IT shops a new way to accept ongoing feature and security updates. Called Current Branch for Business, the offering allows organizations to receive updates after they have been assessed in the consumer version. This way, IT departments can work on validating updates and figuring out how to distribute them before they’re pushed through the system.

These enhanced security and quality control features are just the tip of iceberg when it comes to what’s available. Mobile device management company MobileIron has posted a guide to the Windows 10 enterprise, complete with the infographic below.




We will stay on top of all the developments Microsoft has as we get closer to seeing agencies deploy it across their organizations.

Greg Otto

Written by Greg Otto

Greg Otto is Editor-in-Chief of CyberScoop, overseeing all editorial content for the website. Greg has led cybersecurity coverage that has won various awards, including accolades from the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. Prior to joining Scoop News Group, Greg worked for the Washington Business Journal, U.S. News & World Report and WTOP Radio. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Temple University.

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