May 20, 2020 - Technology

Scoop: Google lands cloud deal with Defense Department

Google colored tubes in a room.
Photo: Google

Google Cloud has landed a deal to help the Defense Department detect, protect against, and respond to cyber threats, Axios has learned. The deal, with the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), is in the "seven figures," Google said, declining to be more specific.

Why it matters: It's a far cry from the controversial $10 billion JEDI deal, but Google hopes the win will lead to a broader deal down the road, as the Pentagon seeks to securely work with multiple public cloud providers.

What they're saying: "Multi-cloud is the future," Google Cloud VP of public sector Mike Daniels told Axios, noting that most businesses use a mix of clouds, including Google, Amazon's AWS and Microsoft Azure. "This is now coming to the federal government as well."

For DIU, Google is helping the agency move to what's known as a "zero trust" environment in which devices are not allocated network resources based on their physical location, but rather granted access based on other factors, such as identity and behavior.

The big picture: The deal comes as Amazon contests the Pentagon's award of the giant JEDI contract to Microsoft last year.

  • Google dropped out of vying for that wide-ranging contract before bidding began in earnest, but has been stepping up its public-sector effort, for which it aims to triple staffing over the next few years.
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