Though Google will help the Technology Innovation Unit of the agency develop a stable cloud management system to identify global cyber threats long out of the running for the big JEDI contract of the Defense Department.
Google Cloud reported Wednesday that a US Department of Defense (DoD) unit would use its Anthos technology to develop a multi-cloud management network to track and respond to cyber threats across the globe. The contract is specifically for the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), a DOD organization that focuses on scaling commercial technology across the Pentagon as a whole.
Centrally managed from the Google Cloud console, the new platform will allow the DIU to run web services and applications across Google Cloud, Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.
The new contract comes amid AWS and Azure ‘s ongoing skirmish over the coveted $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract from the Defense Department. Last October, the DoD announced it would award the cloud contract to Microsoft after a closely-watched and controversial bidding process. A couple of weeks later, Amazon said it would appeal the court ruling.
The JEDI contract dispute has taken several turns in the last few months. A federal tribunal briefly suspended progress on the JEDI process earlier this year. Then last month the inspector general of the Pentagon effectively sided with Microsoft on the subject. Microsoft said two weeks ago that Amazon filed yet another confidential complaint with the DoD about the contract.
For its part, Google dropped out of the bidding process for JEDI in late 2018. The tech giant admitted that despite its government certifications, there were parts of the contract out of control. Google also said it had dropped out of the running partly because its AI principles against developing AI for arms or other software designed specifically to harm people may have been inconsistent with the deal.
Google has also released the Anthos platform to handle hybrid and multi-cloud activities, offering a way to undertake more workloads in the enterprise. It made Anthos generally available for AWS last month, while Anthos debuted in preview for Azure.
Under the latest Security Innovation Unit contract Google will provide the agency with real-time network surveillance, access control and complete audit trails. The DIU will use Istio for safe communication with the server, and switches to Netskope for cloud protection.
Mike Daniels, VP of Global Public Sector at Google Cloud, said in a statement that the company is “honored to partner with DIU on this critical initiative to protect its network against bad actors that pose threats to our national security.”