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The Privacy Advisor | Future of cloud-related opportunities discussed Related reading: IBM software, cloud services now adhere to EU Cloud Code of Conduct

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On June 29, the European Commission hosted the Digital Single Market Cloud Stakeholder Meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to interact with the broadest possible collection of stakeholders, wrap up the work done by the Cloud Select Industry Group, and discuss how to best build on previous key deliverables in order to effectively address cloud-related opportunities and challenges in a rapidly changing environment.

The opening keynote by the European Commissioner Pearse O'Donohue, acting director of Future Networks, discussed the achievements under the European Cloud Strategy. Presentations on the achievements and key deliverables of the C-SIG group included, in relation to the General Data Protection Regulation, areas such as code of conduct, service level agreements, standardization and certification. The commission encourages the organizations to talk to more industry groups and other industries in other sectors.

Take the code of conduct, for example, the purpose is to provide users and SMEs more choices, not narrow them, and to bring them in to be more involved. For a small company, they might not have the resources for legal like the big enterprises do to handle all the regulation requirements.

Recently, the European Commission had a review of the digital single market and concluded that the market needs more industry players, a cohesive system, inputs from industries, and more importantly, involvements from users and other public sectors. While cybersecurity is still an issue, “the mandate of the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA), is to align it to the new EU-wide framework on cybersecurity leading to improved security in the EU. The Commission will also work to propose additional measures on cyber security standards, certification and labeling to make connected objects more cyber secure.”

The commissioner also paid homage to Joe Alhadeff for his great contribution in the C-SIG initiatives. As part of the C-SIG group for the code of conduct, he was instrumental in developing the EU Code of Conduct for Cloud Service Providers' community and was the key driver in designing the code since its inception in December 2012. The EU Code of Conduct for Cloud Service Providers applies to any type of the CSP (including IaaS, PaaS and SaaS), any CSP that processes personal data, and any CSP that is in scope of meeting the requirements of EU data protection laws.

Following the conclusion of the C-SIG review, European Commissioner Pierre Chastanet, acting head of unit at DGCONNECT E2, presented the next step toward an effective engagement of cloud stakeholders in the context of the Digital Single Market's midterm review of May 2017. Snapshots on main challenges and opportunities in a rapidly changing digital market were also presented in the areas of data portability, SME-friendly ecosystem, financial sectors and public sector opinion. According to the public sector, many current proposals did not address the regulation's implications when offering technology, such as data location, which did not provide much information on confidentiality.

In closing, the commissioner announced that June 29 marked the end of the C-SIG working group. However, new faces, new configuration and new work streams are still needed. 

photo credit: Infomastern The Sky via photopin (license)

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