Archive for the ‘By region’ Category

Lobbyists downgrade EU countries on cloud computing

Europe and cloud computing


14 March 2013 – Industry lobbyists have downgraded EU countries in their world ranking of top performers on cloud computing, as the Union prepares to overhaul its data protection rules. Japan, Australia and the US are top of the cloud computing class, according to the Cloud Scoreboard, published 7 March by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), an international lobby group.

Four EU countries – Germany, France, the UK and Italy – are in the top 10. But all six EU nations featured in the study have lost ground. Italy and Spain were the biggest fallers, slipping back by four and two places in the rankings, respectively. The biggest mover was Singapore, which jumped five places to fifth overall.

The BSA said data privacy was one the main benchmarks used to draft the survey. BSA chief Robert Holleyman warned individual countries not to fence off their networks in the name of security. In an interview with the EU Observer he said “we should all be concerned about countries creating national clouds; the cloud is more efficient when it is … Read more

Is Your Private Life Safe Under Cloud Computing? No, says the European Parliament

28 January 2013 – Cloud computing poses a larger threat to your privacy than you might think, according to an European Parliament study.

The study published by its Directorate-General for Internal Policies identified potential risks: “The challenge of privacy in cloud computing is underestimated, if not ignored. The main concern arising from the growing reliance on cloud computing is less the possible increase in cyber fraud or crime than the loss of control over individual identity and data.”

Today Europe is marking annual data protection day, an initiative to raise awareness of how people’s personal information is collected and processed and how to best protect your private lives. The EP is currently looking at plans to update current European rules on data protection to bring them in line with the latest technological developments and prevent misuse of private data.

The report, published at the year-end, also points out that U.S. law authorizes surveillance of cloud data of non-American citizens. U.S. authorities would not be bound by the proposed reform of EU rules, but it is something that could be dealt … Read more

Cloud Computing: New Article 29 Working Party Opinion

3 July 2012 – The Article 29 Working Party has adopted a new Opinion which ‘analyses all relevant issues for cloud computing service providers operating in the EEA and their clients’.

The Article 29 Working Party, the working party made up of the various European data protection authorities which acts as independent European advisory body on data protection and privacy, adopted an Opinion on 1 July on cloud computing.

The Opinion may be read by clicking here.

The Executive Summary is as follows:

In this Opinion the Article 29 Working Party analyses all relevant issues for cloud computing service providers operating in the European Economic Area (EEA) and their clients specifying all applicable principles from the EU Data Protection Directive (95/46/EC) and the e-privacy Directive 2002/58/EC (as revised by 2009/136/EC) where relevant.

Despite the acknowledged benefits of cloud computing in both economic and societal terms, this Opinion outlines how the wide scale deployment of cloud computing services can trigger a number of data protection risks, mainly a lack of control over personal data as well as insufficient information with Read more

EMC to open Cloud and “Big Data” R&D Center in Russia


9 February 2012 – EMC announced yesterday its plans to establish an R&D center in the Skolkovo Foundation’s Innovation Hub in Russia that will focus on development of cloud infrastructure solutions and Big Data analytics technologies for Bioinformatics and Energy Efficiency.  EMC also plans to collaborate on research projects in these and other areas with Russian universities, government agencies, and local and multinational companies in the Skolkovo community. The new EMC facility will be located at the Skolkovo Innovation Center and will work in close cooperation with EMC’s existing R&D center in St. Petersburg.

The Skolkovo Foundation is a non-profit organization focused on establishing an innovation hub to stimulate innovative entrepreneurship that will benefit Russia and the global economy. Skolkovo’s goal is to leverage Russia’s resources in the field of contemporary applied research and create a favorable environment for undertaking scientific developments in five priority areas of technological development: power engineering and energy efficiency, space, bioinformatics, nuclear and computer technologies.

Skolkovo is governed by a special law, which gives its resident companies special economic conditions for running their businesses. More … Read more

France’s cloud computing market set to exceed EUR 2 billion in 2011

23 January 2012 – The recent boom in data transmission and storage capacity has given rise to an increase in cloud computing in France — a sector that has been given the backing of the government’s National Investment Program. This market is set to surpass the €2 billion mark for France in 2011, and may make up more than 6% of the French software and IT-services industry in 2012.

“France is a growth market for high-tech and innovative companies, particularly in the cloud-computing sector, where the leading players are already here [in France], doing business,” points out David Appia, Chairman & CEO of the Invest in France Agency (IFA). 

In 2012, revenue from the global market for cloud-computing services totalled US$68.3 billion while, in Europe, the cloud computing market surged 20% and is predicted to account for almost 15% of the European software and IT-services market by 2015. 

The French market, which continues to grow strongly, was worth €1.85 billion in 2010, €672 million of which was generated by SMEs. This market is set to exceed €2 billion in 2011 … Read more

The Great Wall of Europe: Fear of the Patriot Act Squeezes EU Out of the Cloud

18 January 2012 – Prospective cloud customers – both consumers and enterprises – throughout Europe are wary of the possibility, however remote, that the contents of their cloud deployments may become open to inspection by government authorities. Not European governments, mind you, but American, by virtue of the Patriot Act. Passed into law before legislators ever pondered the prospects of virtual servers in the cloud, the U.S. law grants federal investigators authority, under court order, to ask service providers for information from and about their customers, for use in anti-terrorist surveillance.

Leading U.K.-based telecom analyst firm Informa has been measuring the extent to which European carriers have been withholding their investments in cloud technology, in U.S. dollars. This morning, Informa released its findings, which indicate an almost crippling setback for the continent as it struggles to stay competitive with North America and Asia/Pacific.

According to Informa’s figures, carriers worldwide invested about $13.5 billion in 2011 in technology and resources for delivering cloud services to their clients. Of that figure, North America and Asia/Pacific combined accounted for $12 billion, or about

Read more

Spanish Data Protection Authority Launches Public Consultation on Cloud Computing

17 January 2012 – Following the example of the French Data Protection Authority (Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés or CNIL), the Spanish Data protection Authority (Agencia Española de Protección de Datos or AEPD) has opened a public consultation on cloud computing to learn the opinions and experiencse of service providers and users.

Interested parties have until January 27 to submit their comments. This public consultation is an good opportunity to enhance the AEPD’s understanding of problems on data protection arising from cloud computing and may also help the AEPD find viable solutions and alternatives for data protection compliance within the cloud computing environment.   

Interested parties can participate in the public consultation by fulfilling and online form (in Spanish) accessible by the AEPD’s website,… Read more

European Distrust of US Data Security Creates Market for Local Cloud Service

2 December 2011 – Concern in the European Union that U.S. data protection laws are too lax has created a new market for European cloud computing services.    A recent survey indicated that 70 percent of Europeans have concerns about their online data and how well companies secure it and now two Swedish companies, Severalnines and City Network, have begun promoting their newly merged service as “a safe haven from the reaches of the U.S. Patriot Act.” Under the U.S. Patriot Act, data from European users of U.S.-based cloud services can secretly be seized by U.S. law enforcement agencies.

“We believe that a service owned and operated locally in the E.U., and fully compliant with E.U. data protection laws, will be very attractive for European companies. U.S. companies with European operations will also benefit from the lower latency of a locally hosted solution,” said City Network chairman Johan Christenson.

This gap in the market is also being exploited by other firms such as DNS Europe, Colt and MESH. The latter strongly promotes its location in Germany and “data separation in strict … Read more

In Canada, businesses using cloud computing services unknowingly

25 November 2011 — Many Canadian businesses are using cloud computing services without knowing it, a survey has found, pointing to a knowledge gap amid widespread privacy and security concerns.   Just 29 per cent of 705 senior leaders at Canadian businesses and government organizations said they were using some cloud computing services, according to a survey released by Microsoft Canada Thursday.  However, among the rest, one in five indicated that they used services like Microsoft Web Apps, Microsoft Office 365 and Windows Azure, which are, in fact, cloud computing services.  “One of the things that really stuck out in our eyes was that 19 per cent of those respondents are using the cloud and didn’t realize it,” John Weigelt, national technology officer for Microsoft Canada, said while releasing the results at an event in Toronto.

For more click here.… Read more

Cloud computing to come of age in Asia by 2015, says IDC

16 November 2011 — According to Simon Piff, associate vice president for enterprise infrastructure research at IDC Asia-Pacific, businesses today are still hesitant in utilizing cloud computing for much of their IT needs due to concerns over security, service reliability, data location and sovereignty, as well as vendor support.

This reluctance was reflected in a recent IDC survey on companies in Asia-Pacific, excluding Japan, which were quizzed on their cloud plans, Piff said during his presentation at IDC Asia-Pacific’s Cloud Conference 2011 held here Wednesday. The survey findings revealed that companies in developed markets such as Singapore and Hong Kong showed more reticence in using cloud services, compared with their counterparts in developing markets such as Indonesia and Thailand, the analyst noted.

However, the concerns enterprises have are currently being addressed, he said. In the case of service reliability and uptime, for instance, public cloud users are increasingly more aware of the implications associated with these services, he added.

For more click here.… Read more