Pentagon: $10 billion cloud contract that snubbed Amazon was legal

This March 27, 2008, aerial file photo, shows the Pentagon in Washington.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Pentagon's process for awarding a highly lucrative cloud computing contract to Microsoft instead of Amazon was in line with legal and government purchasing standards, a government watchdog agency said Wednesday.

The Defense Department inspector general found no evidence of White House interference in the contract award process. But the report said investigators could not fully review that aspect of the matter because the White House would not allow unfettered access to witnesses.

The contract, potentially worth $10 billion, was awarded to Microsoft last October, prompting tech rival Amazon to cry foul.

Amazon Web Services, a market leader in providing cloud computing services, had long been considered a leading candidate to run the Pentagon's Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure project, known as JEDI. The project will store and process vast amounts of classified data, allowing the U.S.