Microsoft removed an online mention of its work for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as the agency comes under fire for separating families at the U.S. border with Mexico, Bloomberg reports.

In a blog post from January, Microsoft executive Tom Keane wrote about contracts Microsoft's Azure cloud computing service has with the U.S. Air Force and ICE. The post mentions Azure's ability to help the agency handle "sensitive and unclassified data" and use tools to help with facial recognition and identification.

Over the weekend, lawmakers and human rights groups criticized the policy of separating parents from their children at the border. On Monday, the portion of the post that mentions ICE was missing. After Bloomberg inquired about the removal of the section, it was back online.

"An employee edited the blog after seeing commentary in social media. This was a mistake, and as soon as it was noticed the blog was reverted to previous language," a Microsoft spokesman told Bloomberg.

After restoring the language in the post, the company issued a statement announcing its opposition to the separation policy, emphasizing that it is not working with ICE on anything related to it. "We urge the administration to change its policy and Congress to pass legislation ensuring children are no longer separated from their families," a Microsoft spokesperson said.

The company has $19.14 million in active contracts with the immigration agency, according to Bloomberg's estimates. Companies like Google, Amazon, and Apple regularly compete for government work.

Published on: Jun 19, 2018