October 6 may end up being a day that lives in infamy for many in the international tech community. That was the day that the European Court of Justice struck down the Safe Harbor framework.
What is this Safe Harbor thing Anyway?
The whole Safe Harbor framework was an agreement that helped web and cloud companies effectively do business in Europe at a reasonable price. It did so by allowing US companies doing business in Europe to have data about European citizens on hardware hosted on US soil.
Why is this a big deal?
This is a big deal because one of the core concepts of cloud computing is that data, compute and other cloud resources can (and do) migrate without particular geographic restrictions – we’ll just set Hadoop rack awareness aside for the moment. Thus, someone like a free email provider can then in theory have a single data center in the US serving users all over the world, including places like Europe.
Who will be impacted?
The web-scale/cloud-scale giants of the industry likely have a data center footprint in Europe along with the highly skilled network, security, virtualization and operations teams in place in order to cope with a requirement to keep European data in Europe if needed. It may end up being an inconvenience rather than a disaster. Smaller players like enterprises and smaller cloud providers are more likely to experience the end of Safe Harbor as a costly disaster on legal, policy and technical fronts.
You could stick your head in the sand and hope it all goes away. Of course, you could take a more proactive stance and start down the path of informed action, the first step of which would be to get some more information. To help, we have put together a webinar for Friday, October 23 at 10:00AM Pacific, “No More Safe Harbors on the Cloud.”
In this live panel discussion, you will be able to join Stephen Wu, noted author and attorney, along with Ashish Suri, VP SaaS Operations, Delivery, Securirty and Compliance at CA along with seasoned industry expert Fred Kost, SVP of Marketing at HyTrust.
The webinar is free, and if you have business, vendors, employees or contractors in Europe (and now Israel as well), we urge you to register today.
Hope to see you Friday.
UPDATE: webinar is now ON DEMAND available HERE.