IT giant IBM announced on Wednesday it has been awarded a cloud hosting services contract valued at $1 billion from the United States Department of the Interior as it prepares to move its IT systems over to a cloud computing model.
The news follows a new report by non-profit the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation released last week that suggests that concerns around NSA surveillance could drive up to $35 billion of cloud business away from US cloud computing providers.
The US DOI will use IBM cloud computing technologies, services and hosting as the foundation of its next generation infrastructure.
IBM’s solution for the DOI is based on the company’s secure and high availability federal data center capabilities using open computing and process standards.
The US DOI will benefit from IBM expertise in data storage, secure file transfer, virtual machines, database, web hosting, development testing and SAP application hosting.
These capabilities are made possible by IBM’s recent acquisition of SoftLayer’s hosting service, which are being integrated into IBM’s new Cloud Services division which combines SoftLayer with IBM SmartCloud into a global cloud platform.
The Department will also be able to tap IBM’s Smart Cloud for Government hosted at the IBM Federal data center, the Smart Cloud for Enterprise commercial offerings and the IBM AIX Cloud.
“IBM has been delivering trusted and secure cloud services to business and government clients for decades, and working with virtualization technologies for more than 40 years,” said Anne Altman, general manager of IBM US Federal. “Our Cloud offerings are backed by a long history of successful work in hardware, software and services wrapped in world renowned security offerings, unmatched R&D, and secure supply chains. We’re committed to infusing these capabilities, proven security and reliability, and leading-edge technology into our work with the US Department of the Interior over the next decade.”
Other US government agencies can also access these IBM Cloud solutions via the DOI Foundation Cloud Hosting Services vehicle.
The portal allows request for quotes/task orders to be issued on behalf of other government customers including both civilian agencies and the Department of Defense. The 16 bureaus and offices that manage this initiative spend more than $1 billion a year on IT.
With the current period of declining budgets the Department is migrating to a management model for IT that moves from fixed to variable, assets to services and mission impact instead of IT service metrics.
The Department has a public commitment to save $100 million a year from 2016 to 2021 and then use those savings to fund investments in new business capabilities and applications.
IBM recently began working with US regulators on an investigation into how it reports revenues of its cloud computing business, soon after learning about the investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission in May.