Cloud Computing Round-Up Week 19th-26th of Jan, 2014
Here’s a round-up of the 3 top cloud stories making the headlines this week.
Microsoft To Store Foreign Users’ Data Overseas – As the NSA gets grabby with users’ data, when those users happen to be using US based computing services, Microsoft have made a controversial move to begin storing their data overseas, keeping their information out of the reach of the long arm of the American law. Brad Smith, Microsoft’s general counsel, has told the Financial Times that “People should have the ability … to make an informed choice of where their data resides.” The decision, does not, however, keep American users’ data safe, as their information will still lawfully be within the NSA’s jurisdiction and some users may still choose to move their info away from the Redwood, Calif. computer company.
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Verizon Reveal Figures of NSA’s Data Requests – Thanks to Edward Snowden’s now infamous work to shed light on the NSA’s data dealings, we now know that more than a handful of companies have been subject to data trading with the American group, as a result of the NSA’s counter-terrorism operations. However, despite being required to in many cases, the reputations of many of these companies has taken a hit, with Verizon being one of them. As a result, they’ve revealed that they have received over 300,000 requests (approximately) to aid US law enforcement, including subpoenas, warrants and even NSLs (National Security Letters) from the FBI. While some have said that there needs to be more transparency, it is also important to note that some information (specifically Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act orders, or FISAs) is required to be kept from the public by Verizon due to the law.
Yahoo Search Gets Automatic Encryption – Also in a move to save face with the tech-using public, Yahoo have now chosen to encrypt the searches that their users conduct via their popular Yahoo search engine. The move by Yahoo comes after it was revealed that there are more than a few ways that hackers can and have made their way into Yahoo’s servers, even leading the company to offer monetary rewards to users who could identify flaws and issues in their security in an effort to discover security problems that Yahoo themselves may have missed. It has also been suggested that this is another way to keep the NSA out of their users’ data. However, the search encryption does not seem to be available in the UK or Japan just yet, with only US users’ searches being encrypted.
By Jennifer Livingstone
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