Google has been recruited by US intelligence agencies to help them better process and share information they gather about suspects.
Agencies such as the National Security Agency have bought servers on which Google-supplied search technology is used to process information gathered by networks of spies around the world.
Google is also providing the search features for a Wikipedia-style site, called Intellipedia, on which agents post information about their targets that can be accessed and appended by colleagues, according to the San Fransisco Chronicle.
The contracts are just a number that have been entered into by Google's 'federal government sales team', that aims to expand the company's reach beyond its core consumer and enterprise operations.
In the most innovative service, for which Google equipment provides the core search technology, agents are encouraged to post intelligence information on a secure forum, which other spies are free to read, edit, and tag - like the online encyclopedia Wikipedia.
Depending on their clearance, agents can log on to Intellipedia and gain access to three levels of info - top secret, secret and sensitive, and sensitive but unclassified. So far 37,000 users have established accounts on the service, and the database now extends to 35,000 articles, according to Sean Dennehy, chief of Intellipedia development for the CIA.
"Each analyst, for lack of a better term, has a shoe box with their knowledge," Mr Dennehy was quoted as saying. "They maintained it in a shared drive or Word document, but we're encouraging them to move those platforms so that everyone can benefit."
The collection of articles is hosted by the director of national intelligence, Mike McConnell, and is available only to the CIA, the FBI, the National Security Agency, and other intelligence agencies.