Cloud Computing, Armageddon, & How Not To Sell IT To DoD

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5 February 2019

CRYSTAL CITY: Just when you thought the Pentagon’s new cloud strategy was all about adopting private sector practices, it makes an offhand reference to Armageddon. Cloud computing can swiftly switch users to different backup data centers around the country if one goes down, the strategy notes approvingly: “This will be vital in the case of human-made or natural destruction of a large geographic area.”

That’s not the kind of contingency that private companies usually plan for. But this line and others in the cyber strategy – released Monday– should be a wake-up call for the tech sector that the military is a very different kind of customer with some uniquely challenging demands that require a different approach.

“It’s amazing what I get [that’s] just repackaged with a new label,” the same solutions over and over that won’t work on the front line, Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Dennis Crall told an audience of contractors at the National Defense Industrial Association’s annual special operations conference. “You’re not looking at my mission needs.”

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