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Is The PATRIOT Act Stifling Cloud Adoption Outside Of The US?

According to recent Forrester research, “security concerns” and “integration challenges with other applications” are the primary reasons firms aren’t interested in software as a service (SaaS). This week Forrester’s Stefan Reid wrote about the Informatica Cloud Summer 2010 release and pointed out another reason: The USA PATRIOT Act.

Stefan’s post, Informatica’s Cloud Service Is Especially Flying Under The Radar For European Customers, notes that due to the PATRIOT Act, “European back-office manager will probably not even listen to an American vendor offering a cloud computing integration service.” Interesting.

The good news, according to his post, is that this objection is not relevant for Informatica Cloud Services, due to the Secure Agent architecture. As he explains:

“…the real data flows between various on-premise systems or between European-hosted SaaS apps and the on-premise landscape directly. No data flows via the US. Suddenly, the Informatica cloud becomes exciting to back-office managers globally and especially to traditional customers in Europe.”

I’ve outlined how data is not staged by Informatica Cloud Services in the past, but Stefan makes some useful points in terms of the privacy benefits of the cloud integration architecture for European customers. Be sure to read his entire post and share your feedback. Is the PATRIOT Act really stifling adoption of cloud services outside of the US?

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3 Responses to Is The PATRIOT Act Stifling Cloud Adoption Outside Of The US?

  1. Johny Morris says:

    Although the Patriot Act excacerbates the privacy issues around passing personal data through servers in the USA from within the European Union (EU), the key issue is compliance with the EU Data Protection Directive. Check out Wikpedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Directive_95/46/EC for details. It’s around that problem that a convincinng story needs to be built.

    This is an issue that faces not just cloud solutions but also off-shoring companies.

  2. Unfortunately “…the real data flows between various on-premise systems or between European-hosted SaaS apps and the on-premise landscape directly. No data flows via the US.” does not help.
    When presented with a NSL, a US company will have to transfer the data from outside into the US for disclosure although this will be breaking EU law. (as admitted by microsoft, according to this post: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/igeneration/microsoft-we-can-hand-over-office-365-data-without-your-permission/11041
    Being form an EU operation, I wouldn’t touch a US cloud with a barge pole.

  3. Darren Cunningham says:

    Interesting feedback Ingormar. Clearly an EMEA-based data center is essential for any public cloud investment for you and your company. I’d be interested in talking to you about your overall plans around cloud application, platform and infrastructure investment.

    The point of the post was to highlight the architecture of Informatica Cloud and to point out that only metadata comes into our multitenant cloud-based repository, which does currently reside in the US.

    Darren

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