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The Federal Computing Centre (BRZ) is the IT service provider and market-leading e-government partner of the Austrian federal administration.

19.11.2014 International Symposium "Building Trust in Cloud"

Cloud experts participating in the symposium, Copyright: EuroCloud

Over 120 Cloud experts and stakeholders participated in the international symposium “Building Trust in Cloud”, which was organised together with EuroCloud Austria and SECCRIT.

Cloud topics were presented in the following areas: 

  • Commercial and industrial use of the Cloud
  • Cloud in the public administration and critical infrastructures
  • Security research activities regarding Cloud and critical infrastructures IT (SECCRIT) 

The visitors discussed with a panel consisting of international experts and stakeholders from academia, industry and public administration the state of affairs regarding research and the future demand of innovative and secure Cloud solutions.

Cloud Computing is one of the important IT trends in the last few years. IT services are therefore potentially cheaper and more efficient; a maximum of automation and a high flexibility is possible via Cloud Technologies. This allows IT services to offer demand driven and flexible acquisitions for information and communication technology. Cloud Computing targets various aspects of currently established IT company infrastructures. However, information security in combination with legal conditions is often a barrier for adapting Cloud technologies.

Organisations like Cloud Security Alliance, European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) or the Federal Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media (BITKOM) are starting to provide aids to address concerns of organisations, companies and service providers for “cloudifying” applications – mainly focusing on industrial usage. As not only industrial stakeholders but also public administration and critical infrastructure providers taking up this trend, activities have to be reviewed and consolidated in all these fields to steer and motivate research activities in Secure Cloud Computing. This was the goal of the event.

Use of Cloud computing in public administration

The research project Cloud for Europe is funded by the European Commission and brings together 24 public sector and research partners from 12 countries, to identify obstacles, find innovative solutions and build trust in European cloud computing. Cloud for Europe adjusts public sector requirements and establishes suitable contractual terms for future cloud procurements.

As the market-leading e-government partner of the federal administration in Austria we are exploring the possibilities of cloud computing in the public administration and exchanging know-how and best practices within Euritas, the European Association of Public IT Service Providers.

Dr. Jörn Oldag, from the public administration data centre “DVZ” (Germany), a Euritas member organisation, informed about latest cloud activities according to general regulations and conditions within Germany from the Euritas point of view.

A summarized cloud directive featuring the categorization and contracting options of cloud services for the public administration has been presented. Also the operational aspects of cloud services within the DOI (German core network for the public sector) and the regional networks of different state administrations were incorporated into the analysis. The achieved results were reviewed by the German public bodies ICT Planning Council (IT-Planungsrat), Federal Office for Information Security and a working group of the data protection officers (federal and state level).

At the end of the event the visitors were able to discuss with the panel about the presented topics and the future focus. The panel was moderated by Dr. Andreas Mauthe (Lancaster University). Participants were representatives of jurisprudence, network science, industry and public administration:

  • Prof. Reinhard Posch, TU Graz and CIO Austrian Federal Chancellery
  • Prof. Burkhard Schafer, Techno-legal Expert, University of Edinburgh
  • Prof. James Sterbenz, Cloud & Networking Expert, University of Kansas
  • Dr. David Watrin, Security & Intelligence Expert, Swisscom

Prof. Burkhard Schafer concluded: “The most exciting and rewarding form of interdisciplinary research takes place when all participating disciplines can add to the knowledge both in their own field and to that of the collaborators. All too often, law is seen as a mere “service” in ICT projects, but not an equal partner in the exploration of new ideas. The project should be highly recommended for the excellent integration of legal research into a technology-led programme, which resulted in truly new insights for both law and technology.”

www.buildingtrustincloud.org