23/11/10

By Claire West

The European Union decision to fund a three-year research project that intends to allay security concerns about the Cloud industry was announced today. Despite growing adoption there are still concerns, and the project will develop a variety of technical components and policies designed to make Cloud computing more secure. This morningthe Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) launched aCloud industry code of practice.

Cloud computing is revolutionising the way we work and with analysts such as Gartner predicting that by 2012, 20% of businesses will not own their own IT assets, it is clearly a technology which is set to grow exponentially over the next few years. However, as it gains mainstream adoption, the numbers of businesses looking for correct and impartial advice as well as standards that suppliers should adhere to is increasing.

Best practice and standards are critical so customers have confidence that suppliers are credible and can deliver safely and securely. Outsourcery is a leader in the UK Cloud computing market and believes strong levels of transparency, accountability, responsibility are required and fears to be allayed, for the industry to succeed.

Piers Linney joint CEO of Outsourcery and founder member and of the Cloud Industry Forum said, “Cloud computing is the future of computing and as it is rapidly becoming mainstream, some form of governance will help ensure success and guarantee its future development. The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) and its code of practice will help ensure that the highest standards are maintained. As well as ensuring CIF members are appropriately skilled and regularly assessed, businesses will appreciate the peace of mind and transparency as well as a clearly defined industry standard with which they can assess their suppliers, and undertake Cloud implementations with the highest confidence and trust. We see the launch of the Code as key to driving up standards so that both industry and the customers benefit. Outsourcery fully endorses the princip les of CIF and is proud to be a founding member.”

About the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF)

www.cloudindustryforum.org

The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF was established in direct response to the evolving supply models for the delivery of software and IT services that has expanded well beyond the traditional on-premise method to one that now embraces hosted and/or, pay-as-you-use Cloud solutions.

CIF’s purpose is twofold: To drive a common and public level of transparency about the capability, substance and best practices of online Service Providers (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, Web hosting providers etc) through a process of Self Certification to a Code of Practice. Second, this Code of Practice, and the use of the related Certification Mark on participant’s web sites, will provide comfort and promote trust to business and individuals wishing to leverage the commercial, financial and agile operations capabilities that the Cloud based and hosted solutions can offer. CIF will ensure the integrity and governance of the Self Certification process through regular random audits as well as investigate complaints from parties that challenge any specific participants self certification status.

Our ambition is to bring business consumers and suppliers of Cloud and Hosted Services closer together in a trusted, sustainable and rewarding ecosystem.

About Outsourcery

Outsourcery is a world leading Cloud services and unified communications provider based in the UK. The company has one of the broadest Cloud product offerings for businesses in the world, covering hosted software applications and unified communications solutions as well as professional services to customise and integrate solutions for customers.

Microsoft named Outsourcery in the 2010 Worldwide Partner Awards, held in Washington DC, as their ‘Hosting Solutions Partner of the Year’. As the UK’s number one provider of hosted Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0, Outsourcery was also named as ‘Microsoft Dynamics Hosting Partner of the Year’ and named in the Presidents Club for Microsoft Dynamics; an elite group of strategic partners whose sales achievement ranks them in the highest echelon of the Microsoft Dynamics global network of partners. Outsourcery is also Microsoft’s UK launch partner for UC and winner of the prestigious Comms National SME Hosted Solution of the Year 2010 Award.

A Microsoft Certified Gold Partner with a total of seven competencies, the company employs more than 230 staff based in three UK offices. With an annual turnover of circa £44 million, Outsourcery is the UK’s No.1 independent provider of business mobile solutions. It supports the customer bases for Vodafone and O2, providing mobile voice and data solutions to approximately 10,000 organisations and over 100,000 business end-users.

Outsourcery is the UK’s first carbon neutral UC and hosted IT solutions company, and was awarded the celebrated ‘Comms Business Green Channel Company Award 2010’ for offsetting its carbon emissions to replace open cooking fires in the Kisumu region of Kenya with energy efficient Rocket stoves.

For more information, please visit http://partners.outsourcery.co.uk/

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