Microsoft have announced their launch of new data centres in London, Durham and Cardiff amid mounting commercial concerns about the growing need to ring-fence the location of where data resides in Europe.
Back in June 2015, we blogged about the EU’s frustration around multiple legislative barriers inter-country which were stifling off-premise cloud technologies due to disparate data protection laws. The EC’s Head of Software, Services & Cloud Computing, Pearse O’Donohue spoke then of this desire to create a centralised EC Digital Single Market. Post Brexit and with no EU exit Clause 50 triggered yet, the UK can, with this news, demonstrate it remains in demand by being able to attract such heavyweight attention and become an important datacentre hub this side of the Pond. The news is also a flip for Microsoft as it steals a march on its main rival AWS which is due to open its UK datacentres early in 2017.
Microsoft commented: “Built on Microsoft’s Trusted Cloud principles of security, privacy, compliance, transparency and availability, this creates new opportunities for innovation, with the intent to spark local economic growth for Microsoft UK’s 25,000-plus partners and support local technology advancement”.
There will no doubt be further rationalisation and stitching of new laws around UK data, however, this news will create confidence for UK organisations and businesses in meeting regulatory obligations and as well as creating greater productivity opportunities with Microsoft’s products. Whether this will get backed up by positive, joined-up thinking and innovation with our EU counterparts when it comes to the negotiating table is one crystal ball too far at present. However, in this increasingly digital age for consumers and business alike, it would be of benefit to everyone that sovereignty and neighbourliness could share the stage as we seek to look after our customers and citizens.
“The investment by Microsoft shows their continued commitment to the UK Economy and may encourage a post Brexit UK Data Protection Act that is essentially a nationalisation of the General Data Protection Regulation. With significant support from the Ministry of Defence and the NHS I am certain the UK datacentres will prove very popular. With our years of proven history working in regulated sectors and our long standing relationship with Microsoft Amicus ITS is ideally placed to assist existing and new customers migrating to Microsoft Cloud” JP Norman, Director of Technology, Security & Governance Amicus ITS.