NSA leaks shake cloud confidence

Dylan Bushell-Embling
01 Apr 2014

Edward Snowden's revelations of large-scale surveillance by the NSA is forcing enterprises to rethink their approach to cloud computing, a new survey suggests.

Around six in ten companies who are not yet using cloud computing feel that Snowden's revelations have prevented them from moving their ICT to the cloud, a study from NTT Communications shows.

The study - based on a survey of 1,000 ICT decision-makers from France, Germany, Hong Kong, United Kingdom and the USA - shows that even those who had adopted the cloud are rethinking the ways they use cloud computing.

Around 88% of ICT decision makers are changing their cloud buying behavior as a result of Snowden's leaks, and one in six is delaying or cancelling a cloud contract.

Cloud procurement is also being watched more closely, with just over half of respondents carrying out greater due diligence on cloud providers than ever before.

Enterprise cloud users are placing a greater priority on the location of cloud infrastructure, with 31% moving data to locations where the business knows it will be safe, and 97% of EU respondents and 92% of US respondents now preferring cloud services from their own region.

In addition, only 5% of respondents indicated that location does not matter when it comes to storing cloud data.

“Our findings show that the NSA allegations have hardened ICT decision-makers’ attitudes towards cloud computing, whether it is modifying procurement policies, scrutinising potential suppliers or taking a heightened interest in where their data is stored,” NTT Com Europe vice president for product strategy Len Padilla said.

“ICT decision-makers are working hard to find ways to retain [the benefits of cloud computing] and protect the organisation against being compromised in any way. There is optimism that the industry can solve these issues through restricting data movement and encryption of data.”

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