NetApp weighs in on the EU Safe Harbor Ruling

Image of the world, a padlock and the NetApp logo

Posted on Wednesday, October 28, 2015

By finding that Safe Harbor agreements offered insufficient protection to EU residents with information stored in US Cloud datacenters, the European Union has sent shockwaves through the business world. Although the judgement was made against consumer social network Facebook, any business that shifts data through an international network of Cloud-connected datacenters is affected.

Even now customers are trying to find out where their data is stored, and how much currently resides outside EU territories. Which is why the recent announcement that NetApp does not rely on Safe Harbor agreements has come as welcome news, at least for their customers.

In what is sure to become a new industry standard, NetApp ensures that all of their Cloud implementations fully adhere to the regulatory requirements of the countries in which they do business. Although this set-up takes longer to set up initially, NetApp has managed to avoid the costly, emergency provisioning that their competitors will now need to complete if they are to regain EU approval.

A resulting rally in share prices?

NetApp shares rallied following the Safe Harbour ruling, beating its 200 day moving average for the first time since February, and going some way to reverse their general downward trend. As you would expect, shareholders appreciate businesses that take the time to prepare for these kinds of eventualities.

The NetApp example also helps businesses still considering the adoption of Cloud services. It is essential that your business knows whether a particular provider is synchronising data outside the EU; your business retains responsibility for the movement of its data, and ignorance is no defence in this instance.

For other businesses, the Safe Harbour ruling may be the change that pushes them back to their own private Cloud deployments, thereby avoiding any ambiguity and ensuring they retain complete control of their data at all times. Low cost on-site technologies like EMC’s ScaleIO that allow businesses to repurpose post-warranty hardware to build onsite Cloud-like solutions, could provide a suitable stop gap while they try any resolve the problems caused by the Safe Harbor ruling.

They may even find that these private solutions provide a sufficiently good service to become a permanent part of the corporate IT infrastructure. Taking this approach also reduces the amount of negotiation required to ensure data storage provisions align with local data protection legislation.

If you are interested in NetApp support or if you would like to know more about putting unused hardware back into service, and building private Cloud storage solutions, please give the CDS engineering team a call on +1 866 237 8008.