DISA Postpones $427 Million Cloud Storage Purchase

The DISA, otherwise known as Defense Information Systems Agency, has postponed a $427 million contract to buy cloud storage services. No explanation has been given for the delay however according to the Federal Business Opportunities website, the purchases has been “postponed until after September 30, 2013 – fiscal year end. A revised date for the release of the solicitation will be forthcoming.” The DISA is seeking to negotiate a deal for these cloud storage services for up to six years, with the breakdown being one four year guaranteed deal and two, one year options. According to Defense News, thecontract will replace a $700 million contract DISA awarded to ViON Corp., in 2007.”

This potential deal however, could be dangerous for the agency. They will be exposed to more risk by working with outside, third party cloud storage companies rather than building an in house solution. These cloud enterprises will need to pass strict governmental security tests and a variety of accreditation procedures, including becoming FedRAMP (Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program) certified. According to Federal Times, “a handful of vendors have gone through the FedRAMP certification process: Hewlett-Packard, Lockheed Martin, Amazon Web Services, CGI and Autonomic Resources.”
The process will not stop there as potential vendors will need to prove their complete control over their entire operations, from hardware to software to configuration to service and maintenance.
Though the government enforced security provisions seem harsh, it should not be difficult to pass for the current players in the mix such as Amazon, Hewlett-Packard and Lockheed Martin. These companies alone spend millions of dollars annually on their personal security.
As of now, we await word from the DISA on a new release date for the solicitation of these Enterprise Storage Services.