Google wins DOD cloud pilot contract

security in the cloud (ShutterStock image) 

The Pentagon's innovation arm awarded Google Cloud to build a multi-cloud security gateway that will hunt and respond to cyber threats.

The pilot contract with the Defense Innovation Unit – which makes awards using other transaction authority -- will focus on implementing zero-trust security in a multi-cloud environment, Google announced May 20.

Jeff Kleck, DIU's cyber portfolio director, told FCW in a statement that the project's objective is meant to "enhance our security and control when accessing commercial cloud services, without impacting performance and usability."

The solution, which includes network monitoring and audit trails, will be managed by Google Cloud Console but allows DOD to run services and applications across different platforms, including Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

Google has its eyes set on increasing its cloud business throughout DOD.

"This is a contract with the DIU, but our expectation is that the DOD will look at the project as a model for how to implement their own security posture," Mike Daniels, VP of Global Public Sector, Google Cloud, said in a statement.

DIU confirmed to FCW that Google's solution is an answer to a November 2019 DIU solicitation for an "alternative cloud security gateway" that could be integrated into existing managed services and scale to service more than 500 users and 1,000 endpoints in the prototype phase.

That solicitation was pitched a developing an upgrade to DOD's existing Cloud Access Point gateway that connects commercial cloud offerings to DOD's networks at security levels at impact level 4 and above.

The production goals for the November solicitation were ambitious – "the ability to scale to a minimum of 500,000 concurrent users and 1,000,000 endpoints." The overall goals were to increase speed, reduce latency, maintain audit trails and support mobile and teleworking users.

Axios first reported the news ahead of the Google release, and indicated that the contract was between $1 million and $10 million.

About the Author

Lauren C. Williams is a staff writer at FCW covering defense and cybersecurity.

Prior to joining FCW, Williams was the tech reporter for ThinkProgress, where she covered everything from internet culture to national security issues. In past positions, Williams covered health care, politics and crime for various publications, including The Seattle Times.

Williams graduated with a master's in journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park and a bachelor's in dietetics from the University of Delaware. She can be contacted at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter @lalaurenista.

Click here for previous articles by Wiliams.


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