Amazon's cloud business a harder sell in post-Snowden era

Grazed from Reuters. Author: Editorial Staff.

This spring, Taser International Inc won a small but high-profile contract to supply body cameras to the London police. But the deal nearly collapsed over one issue: where the video footage would be stored. In the end, the deal survived only after Taser dropped Inc as the data storage provider for the year-long project. The fact that Amazon did not have a data center in Britain was a deal breaker for British officials, according to Taser.

The case is an example of the challenges that Amazon faces as it works to expand its cloud computing business, known as Amazon Web Services (AWS). In cloud computing, clients store and process data on remote servers accessed by the Internet, as opposed to storing information in local servers...

Microsoft, rivals challenge U.S. government over cloud data privacy

Grazed from TechTarget. Author: Rob Wright.

Some of Microsoft's fiercest rivals, including Apple Inc. and Inc., have come to the defense of the software giant in a controversial cloud data privacy case that could have negative implications for cloud security. Microsoft Monday filed 10 amicus briefs, also known as friend of the court briefs, from a diverse group of technology firms, media companies, and trade associations that support Microsoft's opposition to a U.S. search warrant for customer emails stored in a data center in Ireland. Microsoft refused to comply with the warrant, which was part of a drug-related investigation, arguing that the data center is outside the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Justice.

But U.S. Magistrate Judge James Francis ruled against Microsoft in April, and later a federal court ordered Microsoft to hand over the emails to prosecutors. Microsoft recently filed an appeal of the decision and says it's committed to protecting customer's data in the cloud...

Cloud Computing: Where Tech Giants Protect Privacy

Grazed from NYTimes.  Author: Mark Scott.

FROM their glass-fronted office parks and start-up lofts in Silicon Valley, American tech companies oversee ever-expanding global empires.

Google has a bigger slice of the online search market in Europe than it does at home, where rivals like Microsoft still give it a run for its money. More than 80 percent of Facebook’s 1.3 billion users live outside the United States, with Brazil and India among the social network’s most important markets. And Apple, which generates roughly 60 percent of its revenue overseas, now sells more iPhones and iPads in Shanghai and St. Petersburg than it does in San Diego...

Threat Stack Secures Additional $5M in Funding to Protect Cloud Environments from Intrusions & Data Loss

Grazed from BusinessWire.  Author: PR Announcement.

Threat StackThreat Stack, the provider of security solutions purpose-built for the Cloud, has raised an additional $5M in funding from Atlas Venture and .406 Ventures. The additional funding will be used to further develop and commercialize Threat Stack’s cloud security monitoring service, which officially launched last month, and expand its footprint with customers using Amazon Web Services.

Threat Stack’s Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) provides continuous security monitoring on application workloads, helping companies detect malicious activity and protect their systems from intrusions and data loss. Optimized for the cloud, Threat Stack uses a lightweight agent on the host to enable fast deployment, auto-scaling and flexibility in elastic environments. After a highly successful and over- subscribed beta program, Threat Stack launched on-stage in November at Amazon CTO Dr. Werner Vogel’s Start-up Launch keynote during the AWS re:Invent Conference...

Cloud, privacy, big data and smart cities top HDS predictions

Grazed from ComputerWorld. Author: Hamish Barwick.

Cloud computing, privacy and big data will increase in priority for enterprises in 2015, while the smart cities trend will continue in Asia Pacific as countries such as China try to address urbanisation issues, according to Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) Asia Pacific CTO Adrian De Luca. Speaking at the vendor’s Innovation Forum 2014 in Singapore, De Luca outlined the company’s predictions for 2015.

Cloud computing

Citing a Cisco Global Cloud Index, De Luca said there is an “overwhelming desire” in Asia Pacific to deploy hybrid cloud – a mix of private and public cloud environments. Approximately 70 per cent of organisations in APAC are already using or evaluating hybrid clouds today, said De Luca...

Cloud Computing: Feds Say Web Privacy Firm Deceived Consumers

Grazed from ABCNews. Author: Brandon Bailey.

Federal regulators said a respected Internet privacy company gave its seal of approval to commercial websites and mobile apps but failed to check whether they were indeed meeting standards for safeguarding customers' data. The company known as TRUSTe describes itself as a leading independent authority on consumer privacy.

But the Federal Trade Commission said it deceived consumers by not following through on annual reviews of websites and apps that carried its privacy seal. The FTC also said the San Francisco-based company let websites describe TRUSTe as a nonprofit service, even after it became a for-profit business in 2008...

New Options To Stay HIPAA Compliant With The Cloud

Grazed from BSMInfo. Author: Megan Williams.

Answering your clients’ needs in responsible ways means that no one can ignore the benefits that cloud computing can bring to the healthcare space. With all the benefits of flexibility, location independence, and cost-savings that cloud computing carries with it, the risks that it poses to the industry can’t be understated, especially when you consider the sheer number of regulatory violations that can occur. Thankfully, with advancements in the sector, staying HIPAA compliant while reaping the benefits of cloud computing is very much possible.

Data Collaboration

Sharing files outside of the healthcare space is simple, especially with the proliferation of services like Dropbox and Google Drive. Within healthcare’s boundaries though, HIPAA compliance can become a huge challenge, especially for business associates like VARs and other IT solutions providers. Citrix has introduced a new and helpful offering to the field...

Does Cloud Need A Privacy Police Force?

Grazed from Forbes. Author: Adrian Bridgwater.

Companies in all business verticals are using cloud computing and its hosted virtualized methods for supplying software applications along with data processing power and storage. This basic axiom we know to be true, so what factors are changing? Somewhere around ten years ago it was a case of ‘cloud is a security concern’. Five years ago it was ‘maybe let’s consider cloud for some use cases’.

Now as we close 2014 it is increasingly ‘cloud first’, or ‘born on the cloud’ if you will. This means that applications and data sets are being architected and structured for a hosted virtualized existence from the start. In turn then, this means that a new operational layer has sprung up i.e. firms are exchanging cloud-based information around the world and some of it is sensitive as it comes under the purview of regulatory controls...

Cloud Computing: Hacker Lexicon - What Is Homomorphic Encryption?

Grazed from Wired. Author: Editorial Staff.

The problem with encrypting data is that sooner or later, you have to decrypt it. Keep your cloud files cryptographically scrambled using a secret key that only you possess, and it’s likely no hacker will have the codebreaking resources necessary to crack them. But as soon as you want to actually do something with those files—anything from editing a word document or querying a database of financial data—you have to unlock the data and leave it vulnerable. Homomorphic encryption, a still-mostly-theoretical advancement in the science of keeping secrets, could change that.

A homomorphic encryption scheme is a crypto system that allows computations to be performed on data without decrypting it. A homomorphically encrypted search engine, for instance, could take in encrypted search terms and compare them with an encrypted index of the web. Or a homomorphically encrypted financial database stored in the cloud would allow users to ask how much money an employee earned in the second quarter of 2013...

MSPAlliance Adds HIPAA, Banking Addendums To Managed Services & Cloud Computing Certification

Grazed from BSMInfo. Author: Editorial Staff.

The International Association of Cloud & Managed Service Providers (MSPAlliance) recently announced several significant enhancements to its Unified Certification Standard for Cloud & Managed Service Providers (UCS). New, unique addendums have been added to the existing UCS Standard, which will now help MSPs and Cloud Providers demonstrate their compliance with certain HIPAA and financial services regulations. The UCS is the oldest vendor agnostic, non-technical certification and audit, created in 2004, specifically for the managed services industry.

“Alongside the advancement in technology that are fulfilling the promise of mobile banking and telehealth, is a growing concern in regard to consumer and patient, which is at the forefront of cybersecurity initiatives,” said Charles Weaver, CEO and Founder of the MSPAlliance. “Headlines report of staggeringly large breaches almost everyday,” added Charles Weaver, and less than two months ago, the FBI warned that health care industry companies are being targeted by hackers, following an attack that resulted in the theft of millions of patient records...