GAO backs Microsoft's protest of $10 billion NSA cloud award to AWS

The Government Accountability Office agreed that aspects of the National Security Agency's evaluation of a major cloud award were "unreasonable."

The Government Accountability Office sustained Microsoft's protest of the National Security Agency's cloud award to Amazon Web Services.

Microsoft protested the award of the secretive procurement known as Wild and Stormy or WandS in July. The ceiling value of the contract is estimated at about $10 billion.

The full GAO decision is classified. The agency released a statement saying that it found "certain aspects of the agency’s evaluation to be unreasonable" and recommends that "NSA reevaluate the proposals consistent with the decision and make a new source selection determination."

According to reporting in Washington Technology, the Wild and Stormy contract is designed as a replacement for NSA's on-premise GovCloud environment, and is a distinct effort from the a multi-award intelligence community cloud contract called C2E which included awards to AWS, Microsoft, Google, IBM and Oracle.

GAO plans to release a public version of the decision after NSA and the companies involved identify classified and propriety information to excluded.

This article first appeared on FCW.