Friday

24th Feb 2017

Focus

EU clouds two years behind US, says IT report

  • EU cloud computing lags two years behind the US according to a leading IT research firm. (Photo: Jonathas Rodrigues)

EU cloud computing will lag two years behind the US due to European privacy rules and the eurozone crisis, said a report on the future of cloud computing released on Friday (1 June) by US technology research company Gartner.

Paolo Malinverno, vice-president at Gartner, commented that "the opportunities for cloud computing value are valid all over the world, and the same is true for some of the risks and costs. However, some of cloud computing’s potential risks and costs — namely security, transparency and integration — take on a different meaning in Europe.”

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Regulating cloud computing, where the Internet and software programmes offer numerous ways to cheaply store huge amounts of data, is one of the aims behind Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding’s proposal launched in January to overhaul the EU’s data protection legislation.

The package is now under consideration in the Parliament’s civil liberties committee and will be piloted by Green MEP Jan-Philip Albrecht, with both the Commission and Parliament hoping to secure a deal in the autumn.

Gartner analysts argue that the slow process of EU law-making, coupled with different levels of harmonisation and implementation by member states, will hamper the EU cloud market. Referring to the ongoing euro crisis, they claimed that it had "deep IT implications, because increasing uncertainty about the euro is causing major investments to be put on hold". In a paper also released on Friday (1 June), fellow IT research body Visiongain put the global cloud market at $37.9bn for 2012.

Meanwhile, cyber experts speaking last Thursday (31 May) at a meeting of the European Parliament's Privacy Platform claimed that outdated data laws put in place before the Internet age increase the ability of governments, corporations and hackers to access sensitive personal information.

Jim Dempsey, Vice-President of US think-tank the Centre for Democracy and Technology (CDT) urged EU and US legislators to work together to “catch up on privacy law in the digital age”. He referred to the fact that existing US laws adopted in 1986 preclude government interception of communications without a court order from the judge, but allow access to data in storage. The EU's data protection legislation was last updated in 1995.

One of the key questions facing politicians in the EU and US concerns the extent of government access to data stored in the cloud. Both the US Congress and UK government have attracted controversy this year over their respective attempts to increase the access of law authorities and the military to personal email and mobile text messages.

Liberal MEP Sophie In’t Veld, who chairs the Privacy Platform, stated that while there was “no ideological divide” on cloud computing the main aim of the new regulation should be to protect individuals from data breaches and overbearing government intervention.

Fellow panellist Sebastian Meissner, of data privacy think-tank Article 29, called on law-makers to draw up clear rules on data sharing between governments and third country data access.

Germany leads EU countries on cloud computing

Five EU countries rank among the world’s top ten for policies that promote cloud computing, according to a study published on Wednesday by an ICT body representing Microsoft and other international software giants.

Pressure mounts on EU cloud deal as deadline looms

The European Commission is under pressure to keep to its self-imposed September deadline to publish an EU cloud computing strategy, as new evidence revealed widespread public confusion about it.

News in Brief

  1. WTO says Russian pork ban was illegal
  2. Belgian nuclear plant made 'significant progress' on safety
  3. Report: Commission gauging EU support for Poland sanctions
  4. Irish PM expected to quit amid police scandal
  5. After Brexit vote, 100,000 UK firms registered in Ireland
  6. Bayrou to support Macron in French presidential election
  7. British by-election tests Ukip strength after Brexit
  8. Romanian parliament buries controversial corruption decree

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. QS World MBA TourMeet with Leading International Business Schools in Paris on March 4th
  2. Malta EU 2017Economic Governance: Agreement Reached on Structural Reform Support Programme for Member States
  3. Socialists & DemocratsWomen Have to Work Ten Years Longer to Match Lifetime Earnings of Men
  4. Counter BalanceTrans-Adriatic Pipeline Is a Major Risk for Banks, Warns New Analysis
  5. Martens CentreEU and US Migration Policies Compared: Join the Debate on February 28th
  6. Swedish EnterprisesTechnology and Data Flows - Shaping the Society of Tomorrow
  7. UNICEFNearly 1.4 Million Children at Risk of Death as Famine Looms Across Africa and Yemen
  8. Malta EU 2017End of Roaming Fees: Council Reaches Agreement on Wholesale Caps
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Innovation House Opens in New York to Help Startups Access US Market
  10. Centre Maurits CoppietersMinorities and Migrations
  11. Salzburg Global SeminarThe Child in the City: Health, Parks and Play
  12. UNICEFNumber of Ukrainian Children Needing Aid Nearly Doubles to 1 Million Over the Past Year

Latest News

  1. Don't blame Trump for Europe's insecurity
  2. EU rules out post-Brexit 'hard border' with Northern Ireland
  3. Fewer EU pupils being taught two foreign languages
  4. Women and child refugees face abuse in French camp
  5. Russian military creates 'information force'
  6. Spain MPs to probe €60bn bank bailouts
  7. Crowded race to win EU medicines agency
  8. Fighting environmental injustice in Europe