In this two-part blog post we will be exploring four common challenges organizations face when outsourcing to the cloud. In part one we will look at compliance and legal challenges and share tips for solving them.
Challenge 1: Compliance with legal requirements for records storage.
One of the most common question that comes up regarding cloud-based storage is if it is legal.
Unfortunately, there is no universal answer to this, and finding the answer is not always easy. A lot of the North American legislation specifies that certain records must be stored in very specific locations. This is often within the geography governed by the legislation itself. This poses challenges for cloud storage because you can’t always be sure where the cloud servers are located, and your data may be stored in multiple physical locations.
In some cases, there are specific requirements as to the format of the documents. For example, it is common to see statutes requiring the retention of a hard copy record.
In order to properly deal with these legal questions, it is essential that you understand all the applicable legislation and that you ensure your outsourced cloud-storage provider can meet those requirements.
Challenge 2: Loss of legal control
A number of challenges are introduced by the fact that your records may be stored in legal jurisdictions or countries outside of your company’s headquarters or operating region.
In the worst case scenario, the movement of records to systems outside your organization’s normal operating jurisdictions means that you can lose legal rights and controls.
To avoid this scenario, it is important to ensure that your outsourced cloud-storage allows you to:
review or monitor how information is handled and processed in all potential locations
resume direct custody and control of your records in the event of contract termination or dispute
control and prevent access to your information by unauthorized parties.
In part two of our blog post we will discuss the issues connected to retention of cloud-based information and potential privacy and security concerns.