The United States Department of Defense may be interested in building data centers on military bases in order to make public cloud easier to obtain for the military. Talks about building public cloud data centers on bases have stemmed from the DoD’s rapid adoption of cloud services. As the military transitions much of its workloads into the cloud, top brass is trying to think of ways that increase efficiency, maximize security and save money. Building a public cloud infrastructure on-site could be the method to achieve all three of those goals.
The Federal Times reports that DoD CIO Terry Halvorsen has explored the idea of hosting a cloud data center on a military installation and providing access to those who require “military grade” security for their cloud applications to have the option of hosting their workload in an ultra secure facility. Customers for such a facility could be other branches of government. Other highly regulated industries such as the financial industry may have interest in hosting their cloud in a military commissioned data center.If CIO Halversen and other government officials green light the proposal of allowing cloud organizations to operate inside of DoD data centers, it wouldn’t be the first time that this has happened. The DoD disclosed that it allows Hewlett Packard to operate inside of one of its Navy data centers. The difference is that this specific data center only handles DoD data. Cloud data distribution centers could potentially handle data from both government entities and private sector businesses.
DoD CIO Terry Halvorsen recently said, “I have received some proposals. I will tell you that, on the proposal basis, they look very attractive…we’re going to walk through those, almost like a war game of those proposals, to see how would we accomplish them.”
Halvorsen goes on to mention the potential conflict of interest in having a specific commercial provider located inside of a military base. If one provider has their foot already inside the door at the DoD, would that impact other companies abilities to bid on DoD projects? Halvorsen believes that new legislation may be required to provide an answer to this question.