Data location in the cloud

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After data goes into the cloud, you may not have control over where it’s stored geographically. Consider these issues:

✓ Specific country laws: Laws governing data differ across geographic boundaries. Your own country’s legal protections may not apply if your data is located outside of the country. A foreign government may be able to access your data or keep you from fully controlling your data when you need it.

✓ Data transfer across country borders: A global company with subsidiaries or partners (or clients for that matter) in other countries may be concerned about cross-border transfer of data due to local laws. Virtualization makes this an especially tough problem because the cloud provider might not know where the data is at any particular moment.

✓ Co-mingling of data: Even if your data is in a country that has laws you’re comfortable with, your data may be physically stored in a database along with data from other companies. This raises concerns about virus attacks or hackers trying to get at another company’s data.

✓ Secondary data use: In public cloud situations, your data or metadata may be vulnerable to alternative or secondary uses by the cloud service provider.

• Without proper controls or service level agreements, your data may be used for marketing purposes (and merged with data from other organizations for these alternative uses). The recent uproar about Facebook mining data from its network is an example.

• The service provider may own any metadata (see the “Sorting Out Metadata Matters” section later in this chapter for a description of metadata) it has created to help manage your data, lessening your ability to maintain control over your data. You should always be aware of where your data is and how it is being used, therefor taking a few for these types of issues could be the one thing you need to protect yourself.

Source of Information : cloud computing for dummies 2010 retail ebook distribution

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