Security

IT professionals continue to cite security concerns as one of the largest barriers to cloud migration. Uniform government standards specific to cloud computing have yet to be finalized, leaving important questions regarding data availability and integrity unanswered. SafeGov.org aims to provoke discussion related to these concerns as well as raise awareness of the ways in which cloud computing could ultimately strengthen existing security measures.

5 Reasons the Cloud and Mobile Are Inevitable

Kyle Cebull, Smart Data Collective,  Friday, April 17, 2015

A lot of people think that, like the internet, the cloud is just a fad. Sorry to burst your bubble, but this so-called fad is gaining some serious momentum. According to a recent Siliconangle.com article, throughout the next five years, a 44% annual growth in workloads for the public cloud is expected. With Millennials demanding that small businesses revolutionize their processes and workflows, more and more companies are jumping into the cloud to help streamline workflows and bring mobility to their workforce. But it’s not for nothing, because the same article reports that 80% of cloud adopters saw improvements within 6 months of moving to the cloud. If you’re questioning the way things are moving or just aren’t on board with the cloud, here are a few reasons that we’re saying that the cloud and mobile are inevitable.

The United States of Cloud saves state and local governments millions of dollars

Thoughts on Cloud,  Friday, April 17, 2015

From the Atlantic to the Pacific, state and local governments are embracing the cloud. In all, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) finds that 20 percent of states are now investing heavily in cloud computing, according to their 2014 survey. And these early adopters are saving significant taxpayer dollars.

Europe Antitrust Chief Makes Case for Google Charges

Brent Kendall, Wall Street Journal,  Friday, April 17, 2015

“It is important to be more speedy in getting the question out, to be able for Google, for competitors, but most of all for consumers to see our concern,” she said. The case could potentially establish a broader precedent for other instances in which Google favors its own products and services over others, she said.

Why hybrid cloud can get agencies over the hump

Bill Rowan, GCN,  Friday, April 17, 2015

For all the talk of a transition to public cloud in federal IT circles, there is a disconnect between promise and reality. While there have been significant cloud programs to date, a widespread transition to the cloud has yet to be made, despite four years having passed since the Cloud First initiative. But this reality may be changing very soon.

Is Android a threat to privacy?

Jeff Gould by Jeff Gould, SafeGov.org
Friday, April 17, 2015

This week the European Commission took not one but two momentous actions against Google. The first  was the filing of formal antitrust charges accusing Google of abuse of dominance in online search. The second, was the launch of an investigation into Google’s practice of forcing mobile device manufacturers to use its purportedly open source Android operating system in only the way that Google prefers. Android of course is the world’s most widely used operating system, with a rapidly growing user base that now numbers more than one billion. While we usually think of it as something for consumers, Android devices are also used in countless enterprises, schools and government agencies. It’s worth taking a look at what the EU’s Android investigation means for those users.

EU and Google

Tracy Mitrano, Inside Higher Ed,  Thursday, April 16, 2015

Because this action will likely stretch out for a long time, this blog post is not intended to be definitive on the subject but an introduction. At first blush, there are three main reasons why the E.U. antitrust action against Google is significant to U.S. higher education.

Congress Turns to Cyber and Data Breach Legislation

Kaylee Cox and Christopher DeLacy, JD Supra ,  Thursday, April 16, 2015

After five years of trying and failing, over the next several weeks Congress may finally make meaningful progress on cybersecurity and data breach legislation. This week the House Energy & Commerce Committee and the House Homeland Security Committee are respectively marking-up data breach and cybersecurity bills, and floor consideration could take place soon thereafter along with a House Intelligence Committee cyber information sharing bill. The Senate intends to consider cybersecurity information sharing legislation on the floor prior to Memorial Day, and data breach legislation may be considered as an amendment to the cyber bill on the floor. Of course, many important details are yet to be negotiated, and the ability of Congress to move legislation recently has been anemic. What makes the current situation potentially different is that these bills are bipartisan, and the White House is supportive as President Obama has urged Congress to act on cyber, data, and privacy issues for some time.

Big Data Looms as Next Battle in Europe

Tom Fairless, Wall Street Journal,  Thursday, April 16, 2015

As Google Inc. prepares to fight charges that it has violated Europe’s competition rules, lawyers here are already limbering up for the next battle: big data. At issue: whether the way that major technology companies such as Google and Facebook Inc. mine people’s personal data should worry antitrust officials. Personal data is an increasingly important asset for digital businesses, some experts argue, even though people hand it over voluntarily when they use free online services. Major Internet firms compile huge data sets that could, these experts say, give them an unfair edge because they effectively act as a barrier to new competition. Incumbent firms might have developed such sophisticated profiles of consumers, and can target advertising with such precision, that new rivals cannot hope to catch up. as well -- a fear that a handful of companies end up dominating the whole economy at the expense of all consumers.

Gartner: IoT requires new architecture strategy

Business Cloud News,  Thursday, April 16, 2015

Enterprise IT professionals and architects will need to develop new architectures in order to help mitigate the technological, legal and reputational risks associated with delivering Internet of Things services, Gartner claims. It has been suggested by some industry specialists that the Internet of Things has the potential to cripple existing datacentre infrastructure from a technical perspective, and could also create new or heightened risks around data security and regulatory compliance.

EU Antitrust Action Today Is Just the Beginning of Google's Troubles in Europe

Nathan Newman, Huffington Post,  Wednesday, April 15, 2015

And this is where the European Commission may be taking the first steps towards even bolder action in the online world. Just last week, EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said that in addition to the current antitrust probe, the EU will be exploring how companies' control of personal data gives them unfair power in the marketplace. In a speech, she argued: Some companies, while apparently not generating euros or cents, still make money because holding very large volumes of data generates value. ... Many people still don't realize that sites that appear to be free are actually paid for by the information you provide through your searches and behavior online. The EU has never looked at control of personal data as an antitrust issue, so this represents a critical shift by the Commission. As regulators begin focusing on this issue, one we've argued at Data Justice is critical for understanding growing exploitation and economic inequality in the new information-driven economy, Google and other big-data platforms are only going to come under increasing political fire. The action today is ultimately going to be less about one company than about Europe signalling that a totally new approach to promoting competition and equity in data-driven markets is needed. In a speech this week, EU Data Minister Günther Oettinger argued for just this kind of new approach to regulation by European regulators, one that replaced "locked environments and platforms" with platforms that "must be more open and interoperable."