Code-named WildandStormy, Nextgov reports that while details about the contract are few and far between, it appears to be in line with NSA’s attempt to move its classified data repository to the cloud.
Interestingly, the existence of the secret contract came to light when Microsoft, one of the other bidders of the contract, filed a bid protest with the Government Accountability Office a couple of weeks after losing the lucrative deal to AWS.
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"NSA recently awarded a contract for cloud computing services to support the Agency. The unsuccessful offeror has filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office. The Agency will respond to the protest in accordance with appropriate federal regulations," an NSA spokesperson told Nextgov.
JEDI part deux?
While losing bidders have a right to file protest, the two dueling parties in this contract, AWS and Microsoft, have a bit of a history when it comes to federal contracts.
Last month the Pentagon scrapped its multi-billion dollar Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract after years of legal wrangling. The contract was awarded to Microsoft in 2019, but Amazon, on behalf of AWS, secured an injunction to prevent Microsoft from beginning work on JEDI, eventually leading to the contract’s demise.
With WildAndStory, the tables have turned and it is Microsoft that is now protesting against the winning contractor, AWS.
"Based on the decision we are filing an administrative protest via the Government Accountability Office. We are exercising our legal rights and will do so carefully and responsibly," a Microsoft spokesperson told Nextgov.
The Government Accountability Office is expected to issue a decision on Microsoft’s protest by October 29, 2021.
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