By Aaron Kesel
WikiLeaks has published an alleged “highly confidential” document outlining the addresses and operational details of Amazon Web Services (AWS) data centers called Amazon Atlas.
The international whistleblowing organization claims to have published the document as an attempt to shed light on the “largely hidden” locations of cloud-based servers.
“While one of the benefits of the cloud is the potential to increase reliability through geographic distribution of computing resources, cloud infrastructure is remarkably centralized in terms of legal control,” WikiLeaks wrote in a statement. “Until now, this cloud infrastructure controlled by Amazon was largely hidden, with only the general geographic regions of the data centers publicized.”
AWS’ global infrastructure page details Amazon’s geographical locations for its servers in terms of “regions.” For example, U.S. East has six locations in North Virginia and three in Ohio, while Europe has Frankfurt, Ireland, London and Paris — with three zones, or data centers, in each country.
Currently, Amazon is one of the leading contenders for an up to $10 billion contract to build a private cloud for the Department of Defense. Amazon is one of the only companies with the certifications required to host classified data in the cloud. The Defense Department is looking for a single provider and other companies, including Oracle and IBM, have complained that the requirements unfairly favor Amazon. Bids on this contract are due tomorrow.
Prior to the release, WikiLeaks turned the document into a puzzle game called the Quest of Random Clues.
The goal of the WikiLeaks game was to “encourage people to research these data centers in a fun and intriguing way while highlighting related issues such as contracts with the intelligence community, Amazon’s complex corporate structures, and the physicality of the cloud,” according to the organization.
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This comes as Amazon has been openly working with law enforcement, which caused an astounding 20 groups of Amazon shareholders to send a letter to CEO Jeff Bezos urging him to stop selling the company’s facial recognition software (Facial Rekogntion) to law enforcement.
This is all further evidence that Amazon, once known for online shopping, is now a key company aiding the police state and helping shape the future of surveillance with biometrics. Additionally, the company has previously taken a $600 million contract with the CIA for cloud computing developed by its subsidiary Amazon Web Services.
If that’s not enough — as Activist Post has previously reported, Amazon is also taking a nose dive straight into retail with Amazon Go, which will utilize cashierless stations and likely biometric security cameras for anti-theft purposes. Exactly like what is being planned by hundreds to thousands of other retailers.
Amazon’s fifth transparency report revealed earlier this year that the company provided more customer data to U.S. law enforcement in the first half of last year than in its history with a shocking 1,936 different requests between January and June 2017, ZDNet reported.
Amazon didn’t state why there was a spike in U.S. government requests during the first half of the year, but for a company that openly has a partnership with the CIA for $600 million worth of cloud servers, with a pending possible $10 billion dollar contract with the Department of Defense, this information should be troubling.
This also comes as Google has been facing months of backlash for its own shady contracts with both U.S. and Chinese governments.
In 2013, the U.S. Intelligence Community spent $8 billion on information technology, according to budget documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
Aaron Kesel writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on Minds, Steemit, SoMee, BitChute, Facebook and Twitter. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.