Microsoft has announced that it has won a deal from the US Government which allows 17 intelligence agencies and offices to use Microsoft's Azure Government, in addition to technology such as Windows 10 and Office.
Microsoft Azure Government is a cloud platform designed specifically for the needs of government agencies that process confidential information, being physically isolated from the rest of the company's data centers.
While Amazon has attracted praise from Central Intelligence Agency chiefs for its cloud environment, Dana Barnes (Vice President of Microsoft's National Security Group) countered, saying "What this does, is it reinforces the fact that we are a solid cloud platform that the federal government can put their trust in" in an interview reported by Bloomberg, "If the IC [Intelligence Community] can trust it, so can the DoD".
Microsoft has been providing cloud services to the some agencies in the past, but according to Bloomberg, the deal renews and expands the previous agreement. The Pentagon has continued to insist that it wants to hire a single vendor to manage its cloud efforts, which has prognosticators betting that AWS will win, but several cloud vendors are eager for that business and the decision could come down to the company that is willing to accept the smallest margin on the deal.
"What this (deal) does, is it reinforces the fact that we are a solid cloud platform that the federal government can put their trust in", said Dana Barnes, vice president of the Microsofts national-security group. Chief among these offerings is Azure Government. Other Microsoft products such as Office 365 boast similar public-sector credentials.