The latest revelations about the NSA and privacy concerns are major ones that even companies like Microsoft cannot ignore. On Wednesday, Microsoft announced plans for its overseas customers the availability to host data outside the US borders, which should interest foreign entities worried about snooping.
The report, as mentioned in the Financial Times on Wednesday, is aimed to curb the fears of foreign countries who are hosting their data on US servers, in particularly on Windows Azure. By giving them the ability to host the data overseas, these customers fears will be eased.
The Overseas Plan
Brad Smith of Microsoft announced this plan in a story with the Financial Times, and discussed the companies needs to host data overseas. The revelations about Snowden and NSA security concerns led Microsoft to deliver this alternative foreign hosting plan. Companies can choose which data center to host their data and should give them piece of mind.
The move by Microsoft is a smart one, and encompasses the increased security and privacy rules that exist in countries within the EU. The EU requires a lot of more intense security with data and these abilities to host data in Ireland, Germany, or other countries should give EU regulators reasons to be satisfied.
Why Companies Are Worried About Microsoft
These latest security and privacy concerns have only been raised in the past few months. Countries like Brazil and others have major concerns with their data hosted in the US, and now Microsoft can give them options to host data in their own countries. By keeping data within the virtual walls of their borders, they can monitor inbound and outbound traffic of their servers.
I’m a huge fan of this move by Microsoft, and as Microsoft is gaining Azure enterprise customers around the world, the company had to do this. The NSA and security concerns are valid, and now large enterprise customers have the ability to watch their data, and have their data held in their own regions. It may cost more, but companies will pay that for total security and privacy of their data, no matter where it is.
I applaud Microsoft on this move and to host data overseas. The EU is a privacy hungry area, and now Microsoft can give these countries what they want.