A group of key players in the local cloud computing industry wants to develop a voluntary code of practice, increasing public confidence for users wary of the great digital unknown.
The initiative was born from a workshop instigated recently by Xero’s Rod Drury following a number of industry discussions – including at the recent NetHui Conference –identifying the need to proactively address standards and accountability around cloud computing.
The first phase of the project will be facilitated independently by the NZ Computer Society (NZCS).
“Cloud computing offers exciting new opportunities and avenues for New Zealand but with that comes responsibilities for service providers”, NZCS chief executive Paul Matthews said.
Workshop participants included representatives from Xero, Gen-I, Microsoft, Fronde, Centranum, Cloud Sherpas, Simmonds Stewart, Equinox, Localist, Webb Henderson, NZCS, and InternetNZ.
New Zealand Privacy Commissioner Marie Shroff, attending the workshop as an observer, welcomed the development.
“We’ve had concerns around cloud computing for some time and a significant survey undertaken by our office earlier this year concluded a clear lack of awareness around cloud issues,” she said.
Telecommunications Users Association (TUANZ) chief executive Paul Brislen said: “It’s great to see this proactive approach by industry and we’re very much looking forward to contributing."
TUANZ was a strong supporter of industry-led codes and strongly encouraged wide participation in the initiative, he said.
A broad reference group will now be assembled and invited to participate including other cloud players, industry bodies such as NZICT Group and NZRise, standards bodies and others.
“While the next steps will be facilitated by NZCS as the ICT professional body, this is an industry-wide initiative”, Matthews said. “For it to be successful we need wide participation and engagement as the code is developed and now look to our industry and others to support this project”.