Nerval's Lobster writes: "The CIA has signed a cloud-computing contract with Amazon worth $600 million over the next decade, according to Federal Computer Week. FCW drew its information from unnamed sources. Amazon executives and CIA officials apparently refused to comment on the matter. Amazon’s private-cloud infrastructure will allow the CIA to use data analytics and other technologies “in a cost-effective manner not possible under the CIA’s previous cloud efforts,” the article stated. Contracting with a privately held company could help the CIA manage its IT costs. For one thing, it could spare the agency from having to build additional data-centers and other infrastructure. It’s also possible that government negotiators—again, if FCW’s report is accurate—could have negotiated with Amazon for reduced rates with regard to cloud services. The first question that pops to mind, however, is one of security. It’s also possible that the CIA isn’t giving over all its internal data to the Amazon private cloud. At least in theory, it could isolate particularly sensitive information within another, separate data-center—while leaving data below a certain security level on the AWS platform."