Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why AMD® Opteron™? Why aren't you using the new Intel® Xeon™ and AMD® EPYC™ processors?
A: As you may be aware, both of the main x86 manufacturers have decided to require non-free, unreplaceable, highly privileged firmware "black boxes" (blobs) in order for their CPUs to function. These blobs are cryptographically signed and verified by the CPU hardware; as such, there is no way to replace them or remove them. Because of their tight integration with basic system operation, even a complete mainboard redesign will not remove them. Worse, public hacks into this system management firmware have already been demonstrated on at least one occasion--and are unpatchable without full vendor cooperation even in the rare instances where they are actually found for patching purposes before being exploited to extract data and cause damage. As a result, we consider the x86 architecture to be a dead end from a security perspective.

While we will continue to offer x86 services based on the Opteron hardware for as long as practical, why lock yourself into the proprietary, insecure x86 ecosystem with hacks on the rise and GDPR-related data breach penalties on the horizon? The next-generation IBM POWER9 processor does not have any of these concerns, and brings a wide array of modern technologies to the table without requiring you to give up any of your freedom. This is why we intend to expand our offering on POWER9 instead of the new generation of unsecurable x86 machines. Make the smart decision and invest in a truly open platform, even if it means relying on open-source applications; your lower TCO and continued provable compliance will justify the initial investment.

Q: Do you accept Bitcoin?
A: Of course! Simply select the Bitcoin option during checkout, and enjoy the extra peace of mind your new, secure leased system(s) will bring.
Q: I have an application that only needs fast network access in bursts. Can I use data caps or transfer limits instead of hard bandwidth limiting?
A: We are exploring the possibility of offering demand billing for network access using nonlinear rates; however, we have not yet committed to this option and do not have an estimated availability date for this service.
Q: Why is this service only available in select countries?
A: We believe that with great power comes great responsibility. While there are many legitimate uses for secure, owner-controllable systems, some residents of specific countries have shown that they will abuse this privilege if granted. We are strongly against the spread of global terror, and as a result have chosen to restrict use of this service to Western nations where we believe citizens understand their responsibilities in relation to stopping terrorism, and where sufficient legal recourse exists to take appropriate action upon abuse of our services. We thank you for your understanding in this matter.
Q: Wait, so you can see what we do on the leased systems? Doesn't this make IntegriCloud™ insecure?
A: No, we cannot see what you do on the leased systems; we have no access to your data and no way to gain access without you expressly authorizing it, assuming good security practice, including FDE, was used in the leased system. However, if you host publicly accessible services, we reserve the right to access the content of those services as a normal Web user to ensure that no illegal or prohibited content is being hosted. As part of the normal course of operations, we may monitor network traffic generated by the leased systems; if this traffic is not encrypted we (and our upstream network providers, their partners, advanced cybercriminals, and most intelligence agencies worldwide) can monitor, record, analyze, or otherwise view the contents of the unencrypted traffic. Furthermore, we reserve the right to collect metadata (protocol-level information, up to and including network traces) as required for operations analysis and/or legal requests. If your network communication is properly encrypted, collection of this and related information cannot reveal the private data being transmitted and received.

When handling sensitive data, we strongly encourage you to use encryption on both the disk and network side. If this is done, we cannot see any of your data in any circumstance except for what you choose to make publicly available via your services. Most Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and financial data is legally mandated to use encryption; IntegriCloud™ simply ensures that the encryption is as safe as it would be on a private, in-house server, versus the trivial encryption bypasses possible on cloud services from other providers. The ultimate security of your data remains your responsibility; IntegriCloud™ cannot compensate for poor patching practices, inadequate encryption, and/or insufficient user access control on the leased system(s).

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