GAO sustains Microsoft’s protest of NSA’s $10B WildandStormy award

GAO has recommended a reevaluation of proposals and new source selection determination.

The Government Accountability Office sustained Microsoft’s bid protest of the National Security Agency’s award of its $10 billion-dollar cloud procurement to Amazon Web Services.

GAO’s Friday decision is classified because the protest record included classified information, but it found aspects of NSA’s evaluation “unreasonable” and recommended a reevaluation of proposals and new source selection determination, according to a statement.

NSA issued the WildandStormy (WandS) solicitation for cloud services in support of classified and unclassified computing requirements.

“After the NSA conducts a security review of the decision for classified information and the parties identify proprietary and source selection sensitive information that cannot be publicly released, GAO intends to prepare and release a public version of the decision,” reads the statement.


GAO issued the decision under a protective order pending that review. The agency will post the public version of its decision to its website when ready.

Microsoft declined to comment.

News of the bid protest comes after the Department of Defense in July announced that its Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract would be scrapped, following a nearly two-year legal dispute waged by Amazon protesting the contract’s award to Microsoft. It has been replaced with the Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability acquisition, which the department intends to issue as a multi-cloud, multi-award contract.

Outside the U.S., AWS has recently won a cloud contract to host top-secret material for British intelligence services, according to a report earlier this week by the Financial Times. The contract is understood to be worth up to $1.4 billion over the next decade.

Commenting on the bid protest out, an AWS spokesperson said: “AWS is honored to have been selected as the cloud provider for the NSA’s Hybrid Compute Initiative, and we remain committed to supporting the NSA’s critical missions.”


Editor’s note: This story was updated to include comment from AWS.

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