FCC to review regulatory and legal impacts to cloud services and identity management

The FCC is embarking on a review of several innovations that have now gained critical mass, among them, cloud computing, identity management and government data transparency.

The FCC is embarking on a review of several innovations that have now gained critical mass, among them, cloud computing, identity management, government data transparency. Cloud computing means so many different things to different groups so the FCC has clarified what areas it will review and raises the question of the definition as part of its review;

a. The National Institute of Standards and Technology defines cloud computing as "a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction." Does this definition accurately capture the concept of cloud computing?

b. What types of cloud computing exist (e.g., public, hybrid, and internal) and what are the legal and regulatory implications of their use?

Cloud computing for many is a simple form of outsourcing tasks, applications and services driven by economics and ICT management costs. There is after all nothing magical about cloud computing compared to say Grid computing.

The correlation in all of this, is the information contained in the cloud, and if it is accessible via the internet, exposing potential vulnerabilities to that dataset. This dovetails into the FCC's review of identity management issues and what regulations require potential revisions.

The review is to be completed by December 9.

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