While cloud computing has been around for a few years, many financial services organizations have been reluctant to move to the cloud because of security and compliance concerns.
On the regulatory front, financial services regulators are very concerned about where customer data resides. If a firm can't identify where the data is being stored and used, regulators could take action. For instance, if data is being stored in a large cloud provider's service, it may be difficult to identify where the data is or how it got there (did the data travel through another country on its way to the data center?).
To address these concerns, cloud providers are starting to offer local cloud offerings to financial services companies. Bloomberg, which launched a cloud-based enterprise information management solution named Bloomberg Vault last year, today launched Local Vault, a cloud service that provides for the granular control of data archiving, compliance and e-discovery policies.
[Bloomberg Enterprise Solutions, which offers Local Vault, has been active in 2012: Bloomberg LP Moves Into EDM Market, Acquires PolarLake].
Although Bloomberg Local Vault is available globally, it addresses many concerns that financial executives in Europe have with cloud based services. An IDC survey, commissioned by the European Commission's Cloud Partnership initiative, described the impetus and barriers to the adoption of cloud computing in Europe. European IT professionals point to legal, regulatory and jurisdictional barriers to moving organizational data into the cloud where the data is often stored outside of the legislative jurisdiction responsible for how the data is handled, according to the survey.
By leveraging Bloomberg's existing data center network of more than 100 local data center sites in more than 55 countries, Bloomberg Local Vault allows firms to have a scalable and secure solution to archive digital messages and communication, but also meet regulatory requirements to keep data in a local country.
"Bloomberg Local Vault is the first truly global service capable of ensuring that the widely-varying regional and national regulations for data storage and transfer are met," said Harald Collet, Global Head of Bloomberg Vault, in a statement.
"European enterprises are looking to cloud providers, such as Bloomberg, to remove the barriers to cloud adoption, including those posed by data privacy mandates," Chris Dale, Founder of the e-Disclosure Information Project in the United Kingdom, said in a press release. "Bloomberg's Local Vault combines the efficiency gains of software-as-a-service (SaaS) with the data privacy controls required by global and European enterprises."
A local cloud offering for financial services is important for European financial firms, as European data privacy agencies rarely wait long to take action. Recently Google was warned by European privacy agencies that it needed clarify and amend its policy on collecting customer data.
With Local Vault, data compliance and archiving policies can be configured to abide by regional regulations across all corporate communications and content, including email, mobile communications, social media content, instant messaging, files and documents, according to Bloomberg.