President Biden met with some of the biggest names in tech two days ago in the White House, placing a particular emphasis on strengthening the country’s cybersecurity infrastructure. The talks came as a response to attacks on government-affiliated databases over the past year – the most notable being an attack on SolarWinds (a government software contractor) and Colonial Pipeline (a digital system managing oil distribution in Houston).
All of the who’s who of the tech world were present and left with some pretty big promises to fill. Silicon Valley’s tech titans all issued hefty commitments to invest in cybersecurity over the next five years, with Alphabet’s (GOOGL) Google pledging to invest over $10b and Microsoft (MSFT) pledging $20b. These talks happened in the backdrop of recent squabbles between Microsoft and Amazon (AMZN) just two weeks ago over the NSA’s $10b cloud computing contract. With enterprise security solutions becoming a mainstay of big tech, it comes as no surprise that the government is building these relationships in a bid to strengthen collaboration in the sector… and avoid fallouts during contract biddings.
why it matters
The US government’s spending on IT contracts increased by $6.8b annually in 2020, making it the fastest growth it has ever seen — reaching a total of $76.2b. As government agencies experience a shift in working environments too, their need for big tech to step in with secure (but high-quality) solutions is bigger than ever.