By Claire West

In response to the recent warning from campaign group, Get Safe Online, highlighting anti-virus cold calls to UK Internet users, Andy Burton, chairman of the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) and CEO of Fasthosts is publicly supporting the work Get Safe Online is doing by stressing the need for an official Code of Practice for web site content and associated Cloud Service Provider operations.

Andy commented: “Get Safe Online’s research suggests that a third of UK Internet users are still victims of viruses with more than a fifth saying they had suffered identify fraud. These staggering statistics reflect the extent of today’s Internet crime and highlight the need for an official Code of Practice, which will help to filter professional companies from bogus operators. One of the biggest challenges online today is to have clear understanding of who is actually behind any website that a consumer transacts with.

Due to the rising number of IT threats, there is a lack of confidence in cloud-based (or online) solutions with over 90% of UK businesses seeing a Code of Practice as ‘Essential’ or ‘Important’ in driving the Cloud. Our goal is to address these end user concerns by improving awareness and accessibility of key information about the organisation behind the website to ensure you know who you are dealing with, where they are based, how to contact them and how they operate.

The Cloud Industry Forum is about to launch an official Code of Practice to establish a benchmark for both cloud-service providers and users, in order to help raise service quality within the Cloud. The Code of Practice will not limit operators but will enable them to enhance their services credibly and avoid mis-leading the public,” Andy concluded.

There are a number of initiatives in the UK at the moment supported by Government to drive adoption and innovation online, including the likes of Race Online 2012. But with a wider market of mixed skills and awareness the sound advice from Get Safe Online and the new powers being bestowed on the ASA to review website content are essential to protect the public. The new Code of Practice is well placed to support all of these important initiatives.

The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) will be officially launching its Code of Practice on 22nd November 2010.