Building Confidence in the Cloud:
A Proposal for Industry and Government Action for Europe
to Reap the Benefits of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing offers the potential for efficiency, cost savings and innovation gains to
governments, businesses and individual users alike. And because the cloud transcends national
boundaries, cloud computing also offers a unique opportunity to bring Europe one step closer to
achieving the EU 2020 vision of a robust, truly integrated and seamless Digital Internal Market.
To realize these benefits, there are also challenges that must be addressed along the way – enabling
wide-scale cloud adoption by giving users the confidence needed to embrace cloud computing.
Some of these challenges call for industry action, some require government action, and many will
involve active collaboration of consumers, industry and government. This paper is intended to
explore some of these issues, particularly those that touch on regulatory differences between
countries where more harmonization and government coordination or legal reform is needed. The
call to action presented includes proposals that will need careful consideration and an open and
inclusive debate, and Microsoft looks forward to a constructive dialogue with users, policymakers
and innovators on the subject.
Equally important are many aspects of cloud computing involving the relationship between
consumers of cloud services and the many providers of cloud services, or among cloud providers
themselves – issues such as service level agreements, interoperability, and transparent business
practices. These discussions are getting considerable attention as customers voice their needs, and
the marketplace is both active and competitive in attempting to meet these needs. This
marketplace includes many customers and many vendors, that are large and small, and that come
from every country and region. Europe can take full advantage of this heterogeneous and vibrant
marketplace and reap the benefits of this wave of computing by removing the obstacles that could
reduce confidence in the use of cloud services and slow the uptake of cloud computing.
Responsible government action includes ensuring that Europe has the right communications
infrastructure in place to support the cloud; creating a sensible and coherent EU regime governing
the flow and protection of data stored in the cloud; and establishing and enforcing an advanced
privacy and security framework that is more closely aligned with the ways in which computing is
The digital agenda is now squarely at the centre of Europe’s priorities, and with a new Parliament
underway and a new Commission soon to be in place, this is an ideal time to initiate a multi-
stakeholder dialogue about the cloud. This paper is intended as Microsoft’s contribution.
The Promise of Cloud Computing
In Europe and elsewhere, computing is experiencing a powerful transformation. Driven by
innovations in software, hardware, and network capacity, the traditional model of computing –
where users operate software on their own PC and IT systems – is gradually being replaced by one
where users increasingly combine ever-smarter client devices that access applications and services
both on the client itself and over the Internet, i.e., “the cloud”. In terms of efficiencies, innovation
acceleration, cost savings, and greater computing power, there are substantial benefits to be gained
from cloud computing.
European businesses, particularly SMEs, already are taking advantage of this combination of client
and cloud to innovate, to reach wider markets, and to become more competitive. At Microsoft, we
have seen this first-hand; many of the 8,000 startup IT companies in the EU involved with our
BizSpark programme, among the 126,000 European partners overall that we work with, are directly
involved in developing new cloud technologies and cloud-based services. New companies such as
Lokad in France, TradeFacilitate in Ireland, Huddle in the UK – all are defying slow economic times to
build new businesses looking to the future. European governments and citizens, meanwhile, are
also exploiting the cloud, with many public services now being offered at less cost and with greater
speed to more individuals.
These are among the many reasons why Microsoft is excited about the emergence of cloud
computing and collaborating closely with European innovators. It is also why we are investing
heavily in the cloud infrastructure, an open and interoperable platform, and products and tools that
maximize user flexibility, security and choice to ensure a seamless computing experience.
Challenges to the Growth of a Digital Internal Market for the Cloud
Commissioner Reding stated recently that the “protection of personal data . . . and the ability to
preserve private information are of major importance to guarantee trust in an online single
market”.1 This rings particularly true with regard to cloud computing.
Many experts, including those at Microsoft who collaborate in different platforms (like ENISA) agree
that the cloud offers important opportunities to advance security. For example, most cloud
computing providers have greater and better security expertise, management and controls than
many enterprises and even many government agencies. But at the same time, the cloud
infrastructure also gives rise to new privacy and security challenges, and presents attractive targets
for hackers. The cloud will move data from local on-site PCs and servers to equipment that is
physically and administratively controlled by a third party and that may be located in third countries.
This shift from the desktop to the cloud raises many issues, among them what third parties can (and
are legally obligated to) do with the information and who can access it.
Industry has an important responsibility to pursue initiatives that enhance privacy and security in the
cloud, both by adopting robust practices and technologies that effectively protect data online and by
clearly communicating these measures to users in order to enable them to make informed choices.
Initiatives such as Trust in Digital Life are going some way to address these issues. Governments
have a role to play here as well. Part of this role requires the creation of a sensible and coherent
regime in Europe governing data stored in the cloud, so that cloud users and cloud providers have a
clearer understanding of what rules apply and how. And part requires the establishment and
1 Viviane Reding, Member of the European Commission responsible for Information Society and Media, A
European Digital Agenda for the New Digital Consumer, BEUC multi-stakeholder Forum on "Consumer Privacy
and Online Marketing: Market Trends and Policy Perspectives" Brussels, 12 November 2009, SPEECH/09/524.
enforcement of a advanced framework of privacy and security that is more closely aligned with the
ways in which not only computing, but also the interaction between people, is evolving.
Privacy and security are, of course, not the only prerequisites to a robust and seamless cloud market
in Europe. Technological elements are also important. Continuous and affordable broadband
access, for example – achieved through traditional and wireless technologies and more efficient use
of spectrum – is essential to enable ubiquitous access to the cloud.
A Call for Industry and European Action
Before the benefits of the cloud can be fully realized and a true EU Digital Internal Market created
for European SMEs and other stakeholders, both industry and European policy makers need to take
responsible action to address both the capability of all Europeans to connect reliably with cloud
technologies, and to enhance their confidence in using them. Our efforts should focus on:
Ensuring that the European communication infrastructure is cloud-ready. Cloud
computing can only deliver the full benefits when there is ubiquitous and affordable
broadband access. Continuity of access will encourage consumers to make greater use of
cloud computing services and SMEs to focus more on developing new content and
Ensuring a genuine single market by bringing coherence to the legal framework
applicable to the connected world, including the cloud. This is needed to avoid data of
European citizens and cloud providers being subject to a fractured and, at times,
conflicting set of legal rules and principles. Among other things, Europe should work to
address and eliminate divergent Member State interpretation and application of data
retention and other e-communications rules.
Ensuring greater transparency about the privacy and security practices of cloud providers
through industry adoption of a self-regulatory code, alongside possible reforms to the
European framework for international transfers, in order to ensure that essential privacy
protections apply to the cloud and users can make informed choices.
Enhancing security in the cloud by providing for greater rights of civil enforcement against
cyber attacks and ensuring greater coordination and resourcing for law enforcement
In addition, the EU should take a leadership role in the adoption of a multilateral framework in the
form of a treaty or similar international instrument to resolve persistent problems of jurisdiction and
sovereignty over multiple aspects of the cloud.
Ensure that the European communication infrastructure is cloud-ready
Increasing connectivity demands arising from the emergence of cloud computing technologies have
reinforced the importance of enhancing Europe’s broadband infrastructure. Confidence in cloud
computing begins with pervasive and reliable connectivity.
The EU has recognised the need for improved broadband, placing it squarely in Europe’s digital
policy agenda. And the Commission has already devoted significant attention to creating a
framework to encourage investment in next generation access, which will see optical fibre move
closer to consumer homes in order to enhance access network performance. While optical fibre will
play an ever-increasing role in the cloud-ready infrastructure, however, wireless technologies are
also crucial to ensuring that the benefits of cloud computing will be widely available – including in
remote and rural areas.
Spectrum regulators can assist in achieving ubiquitous access by encouraging radically more efficient
use of spectrum. The key bottleneck for the deployment of wireless technologies is the lack of
available spectrum suited to wide area coverage. European spectrum policy has proved contentious,
demonstrated by the Commission’s two year effort to define and implement a pan-European Digital
Dividend under which spectrum would be released from broadcasting to support wider broadband
connectivity. It is encouraging that the Commission has now set itself the goal of streamlining
spectrum policy development through a multi-annual programme, bringing together the
Commission, Parliament and Council.
A priority for this multi-annual programme should be the TV white spaces – the gaps left between TV
stations. These represent substantial underused capacity which could form a powerful complement
to spectrum released under the Digital Dividend, helping to achieve the ubiquitous access needed
for cloud computing to deliver its full potential for European citizens and consumers.
Ensure a single market and promote cloud innovation and use through a more
coherent regulatory framework
As cloud computing evolves, the traditional geographical limitations applicable to data flow
increasingly disappear. Information can be created in France using software hosted in Poland,
processed in the UK, stored in Ireland and accessed in Latvia by Italian citizens. Cloud providers,
meanwhile, may have operations and data centres located in different countries within Europe and
across the globe, further contributing to cross-border storage and dissemination of data for an
increasingly mobile user community – as exemplified by the take-up of mobile services in Europe.
In this way, cloud computing provides the hardware and software infrastructure and enables the
creation of a truly single market for digital services in Europe. But, this digital single market can only
succeed if Europe fosters a harmonized and coherent legal regime to govern the flow of data,
including access, retention, and protection. Unfortunately, this is not the case in Europe today; on
the contrary, the legal frameworks governing the cloud and other connected technologies are
fragmented and inconsistent, and they risk erecting new barriers to the single market. Europe’s data
retention regime – which flows from the EU’s Data Retention Directive – illustrates the problem.
The Data Retention Directive generally requires providers of electronic communications services
(“ECSs”), including those operating via the cloud, to retain certain categories of communications and
traffic data, such as the email address of the recipient of an email or information identifying the
recipient of an Internet voice call, from anywhere between 6 months and 2 years. These retention
mandates are meant to enable law enforcement authorities to access and review in criminal
investigations the communications data that might otherwise have been deleted by the ECS.
Unhelpfully, Member States have taken divergent views as to whether cloud service providers need
to retain data under the Directive and, if so, for how long. For instance, Member States disagree on
what Internet-based services constitute ECSs; indeed, in some cases even authorities within the
same Member States disagree. Even assuming there is agreement on when a provider is an ECS,
some Member States have extended data retention obligations to services beyond those
encompassed by the Directive. These problems are compounded by the latitude Member States
have under the Directive to adopt varying retention periods (from 6 months to 2 years), which are all
too frequently applied to the same service provider with unfortunate results. A provider’s
compliance with a 6-month retention mandate of one country may violate a 2-year mandate arising
The result is that cloud providers continue to operate in a realm of legal uncertainty, unsure of their
obligations and often expected to comply with irreconcilable data retention mandates. Cloud users
face similar uncertainties.
As a first step toward the creation of a Digital Internal Market for the cloud, there needs to be
agreement on which services constitute ECSs across the Member States. This is, of course, a
challenging task, particularly given that cloud offerings can include other services alongside
electronic communications services – but it is a question that must be tackled quickly. The
Commission – and possibly the newly-launched Body of European Regulators for Electronic
Commerce (BEREC) – should as a matter of urgency work with stakeholders to clarify this issue so
that cloud providers know and understand their obligations to achieve the shared goal of meeting
the emerging needs of European citizens and consumers.
Clarifying when a cloud provider is an ECS is only one part of the solution. To the extent the
Directive is interpreted to apply to certain cloud provider services, efforts also are required to
address inconsistent Member State data retention mandates. One possible solution could involve
amending the Directive to introduce a single, uniform period for data retention that applies in each
Member State. Alternatively, a system of mutual recognition could be established whereby the
courts and regulators in one Member State recognize and honor the period chosen by another
Member State as long as it conforms to the Directive. Member States could continue to choose a
retention period ranging from 6 months to 2 years, but would refrain from applying their own period
to data stored by providers in another Member State.
The Commission’s ongoing review of the Directive’s implementation provides an ideal opportunity to
consider and resolve these issues. We hope that the Commission will work expeditiously along the
lines it has started, and with the full range of stakeholders, including cloud users and providers, law
enforcement, data privacy authorities and Parliament, in the effort to understand and resolve the
challenges of the current regime.
Addressing the challenges surrounding data retention is only the first step in providing a harmonized
and coherent legal framework for cloud users and providers, however. Similar national divergences
exist in other regulatory frameworks affecting the cloud, including the rules relating to e-privacy,
network security, and e-communications. Confronting these emerging issues and crafting holistic
solutions must become a top priority for European policymakers if the vision of the Digital Internal
Market is to become a reality.
Fortunately, the EU has shown itself adept at anticipating technological transitions and shaping its
legal frameworks accordingly. In the late 1980s, for example, European policymakers recognized
that diverging legal rules relating to the copyrightability of software in EU Member States
threatened to stifle software development in Europe at a time when software innovation and use
was poised to explode. In 1991, the EU adopted the Computer Programs Directive, harmonizing the
copyright regime and creating a single market for software across Europe, enabling Europe’s
software sector to flourish. With Europe now reaching another transitional point in computing,
diverging rules as described above present a similar risk; the Lisbon Treaty and related initiatives
such as the Stockholm programme already in the pipeline provide the EU with an opportunity to
realign and harmonize its laws.
Promote transparency and privacy for consumers and businesses in the cloud
In order for the cloud to realize its full potential, users must be able to repose their trust in it; users
should not feel that to obtain the benefits of the cloud they need to sacrifice their own control over
their data and the privacy or security of it. The success of the cloud depends on ensuring that its use
does not lead to an erosion of the user’s fundamental rights or limitations on their ability to store,
access, process and move their own data.
While cloud providers recognize the importance of user confidence, they differ in their approaches
to privacy and security. This may reflect different business and revenue models; whether the
provider traditionally has focused more on consumers as opposed to enterprises or government
customers; differing assessments of how best to mitigate and manage security risks; and other
factors particular to that cloud service provider. These varying approaches are not inherently
problematic; to the contrary, this may provide one important way by which cloud service providers
can distinguish their offerings to potential customers, on mutually agreed minimal conventions.
What is problematic, however, is that the privacy and security practices of cloud providers often are
not transparent to the user. European data protection regulators have noted the problem, having
expressed concern with the opaque and uninformative privacy policies and statements used by
online service providers. While all providers claim that they respect their users’ privacy and have
appropriate systems in place, few back up these claims with the specifics that enable users to
evaluate these claims or to compare privacy practices in any meaningful way. The challenge is to
ensure users receive more and better information from cloud providers about how their data will be
stored, processed and made available, as well as learn what measures are being taken to secure
their data in the cloud.
This challenge can be overcome. Cloud providers clearly have a responsibility to provide better
information than they do at present to explain how data are collected, stored and processed, so that
users can make informed decisions about their options. Simply put, it should not be enough for
service providers to simply say that they respect users’ privacy; there needs to be real transparency
about what they are actually doing to protect that privacy. This increased information flow needs to
be accompanied by steps to ensure that users understand the information being provided –
including, for example, whether a provider’s architecture, infrastructure, and related information
security controls satisfy verifiable and robust security criteria. Cloud providers should engage with
other relevant stakeholders, such as consumer groups and data protection regulators, on how best
to educate users on privacy and security matters.
One potential solution could involve industry’s adoption of a new self-regulatory code on a set of
agreed “Transparency in Cloud Computing” principles – principles designed to ensure that users are
able to make informed decisions when selecting their service provider. For example, service
providers could be required to explain their data handling practices in clear and precise terms, set
out their policies relating to data portability and user access, and clarify how long user data are
retained after an account is terminated. Critically, this could also ensure that providers explain
whether their information security programs comply with leading third-party standards, such as the
International Standards Organization series (ISO 27000) for information security management or
similar requirements; whether they utilize appropriately robust authentication mechanisms; and
whether applications and other components of the service (both hardware and software) receive
thorough security testing before deployment. ENISA’s recently-released Information Assurance
Framework for cloud providers could help in determining the criteria that might be included in any
Transparency in Cloud Computing principles.
While industry is working to provide greater transparency, policymakers at the same time need to
ensure that Europe’s existing data privacy regime and its solid protections apply sensibly to the
cloud and take account of the advances in computing made since the regime first came into
existence. Unfortunately, the EU’s data protection framework, enacted to regulate an earlier era of
computing involving point-to-point data transfers, appears increasingly out-of-date in a world of
routine cross-border and flexible, adaptive international data flows predicated on cloud
architectures. To the extent that framework cannot sensibly be applied to the cloud and similar
connected technologies, then there is a real risk that the framework will come to be seen as
impossible to implement, its requirements henceforth ignored and the privacy rights of European
Already, many have questioned whether key instruments, such as the Data Protection Directive, can
be sensibly applied to services in the cloud in practice. Many feel they cannot, pointing for instance
to weaknesses in existing provisions regulating transfers of data outside the EU. The trend toward
cloud computing and the growth of online services has resulted in a dramatic increase in data flows.
The current mechanisms did not foresee this, and they are too inflexible and cumbersome to be
applied to current needs. For this reason, the Commission’s decision to review the Legal Framework
for Data Protection could not be more timely; it has triggered a vigorous and healthy debate on
whether the European data protection framework fits this new world of cloud computing.
Among other things, the Commission should consider more efficient mechanisms for international
data transfers. Ensuring continued strong protection for EU-origin personal data, regardless of
location, should continue to be the objective of EU rules on international transfers. However,
existing mechanisms for doing so may need to be improved as companies must now routinely
transfer data to jurisdictions outside of the EU that are not deemed to offer equivalent protection
for personal data. By critically examining the European data protection regime in light of the specific
challenges of the globally connected world and the cloud, Europe can ensure that its data privacy
regime remains fit for purpose, guiding companies on how to comply with data transfer provisions
and continues to provide world class privacy protections for future generations of Europeans.
Europe could also be at the forefront in the development and – more importantly – adoption of
Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PETs).
Enhance security for data that are held in the cloud
Microsoft has a long history of supporting law enforcement to help fight digital crime, including
crimes involving data in the cloud. In our experience, three elements are critical to combating digital
crime successfully: (1) strong deterrence through criminal and civil enforcement with meaningful
penalties and remedies; (2) a legal framework that encourages cooperation and information-sharing
between the public and private sectors, especially the sharing of technical expertise; and (3) the
ability for law enforcement in different jurisdictions to team up and exchange information globally.
Unlike other regions, many of these elements are already in place in Europe. A major exception,
however, remains in the area of civil enforcement. Under many Member State laws, only the party
whose individual account is directly harmed by a cyber attack can bring a legal action against the
perpetrator of the attack. This means that cloud service providers and other online intermediaries
are prevented from instituting such actions in their own right on behalf of their customers, even
though they have a clear stake in preventing future attacks. Microsoft believes that the security of
cloud computing services would be greatly strengthened by changing these laws to give third parties
a right of action against hackers and other cyber criminals.
The absence of third-party rights to bring claims in cases of cyber attacks hinders robust
enforcement, since in many cases the individual party affected may be unwilling or unable to pursue
a claim. One of the many positive attributes of cloud computing is that it provides cost-effective,
scalable services, enabling SMEs to reap the benefits of advanced ICT infrastructure that previously
were only affordable for large companies. SMEs are unlikely, however, to have the technical know-
how, time, or money to take action against cyber criminals, who are frequently part of large-scale
organized crime groups operating across borders.
A third party cause of action against hackers also would serve to complement the strong criminal
prohibitions against hacking and related activities found in the EU’s Framework Decision on Attacks
against Information Systems. These strong criminal prohibitions would also benefit from robust
enforcement in practice. Microsoft is concerned, however, that law enforcement efforts in the
online space are often under resourced, and has initiated cooperation to build an effective and
strategic public/private partnership to build capacity against cybercrime. The recent allocation by
the European Commission of EUR 3 million to the 2CENTRE project, which has been undertaken by
Ireland, France and Microsoft, is a positive step along these lines, representing the largest
investment to date from the European Commission on a cybercrime project.
The need for enhanced law enforcement training, the development of expert forensic analysis
related to computer crimes, and the deployment of state-of-the-art technologies capable of keeping
pace with evolving threats is greater than ever. The ability to identify perpetrators of online attacks
is one of the most fundamental challenges facing the international law enforcement community
today. It is a challenge that will only increase as more data moves to the cloud.
Resolve sovereignty issues in the cloud through common approaches to jurisdiction
As the cloud evolves, and as users and providers begin to process and store greater amounts of user
data, they face a growing dilemma. National authorities, confronted with the challenge of online
crime and the use of the Internet in connection with threats to public safety or national security,
increasingly are focused on obtaining access to user content and other data held by cloud service
providers. Multiple jurisdictions may have an interest in a single matter, each seeking access to user
information. There are, however, no universally agreed rules governing such access by law
enforcement – and even in the EU, the rules are often unclear in their scope and application. The
result is that service providers are increasingly subject to divergent, and at times conflicting, rules
governing access to and jurisdiction over user content and data.
This thicket of competing and conflicting laws within the EU and internationally presents a significant
obstacle to the delivery of cloud services that meet users’ reasonable expectations of privacy.
Where the rules of different nations within the EU and abroad conflict, a cloud provider’s decision to
comply with a lawful demand for user data in one jurisdiction may place a provider at risk of
violating the privacy or other laws of another jurisdiction. Equally troubling, this situation makes it
extremely difficult for providers to give their customers accurate and adequate notice of the
conditions under which their data might be accessed by law enforcement.
Countries have sought to establish procedures to avoid such conflicts, via mechanisms such as
mutual legal assistance treaties (“MLATs”) and letters rogatory. But these mechanisms, which often
have their origins in the nineteenth century, have proven problematic in practice. MLATs, for
example, are too slow and cumbersome to capture electronic data stored on Internet servers, and
law enforcement authorities in some cases are unwilling to pursue this route and expect prompt
disclosure of data. And, although nearly four dozen countries have ratified and/or signed the
Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime which requires signatories to establish points of
contact who are available 24/7 to process requests, this has not resolved the problem.
In the EU, the recently-adopted European Evidence Warrant (“EEW”), which allows for the
recognition of one Member State’s evidentiary warrants in other EU Member States, provides a
simplified, more expeditious system for the gathering and transfer of evidence in criminal
proceedings. However, the EEW does not solve the issue for most cloud-based data. This is because
EEWs cannot be issued to obtain communications data retained by providers under the Data
Retention Directive or real-time intercepted communications.
These challenges – which are compounded by similar, but even more marked jurisdictional conflicts
at the international level – have encouraged some countries to begin to ignore established
procedures and simply demand that local employees disclose data regardless of where the data are
located or where the relevant service provider is established. To encourage continued investment in
cloud computing services and related technologies, there must be greater clarity and consistency on
rules that will protect the privacy and security of user data while also ensuring legitimate law
enforcement needs are addressed.
Industry has tried to take the initiative to help resolve these dilemmas, or at least lessen their
impact. Microsoft, for example, has adopted a policy of responding to law enforcement demands to
block access to Windows Live Spaces content only if it receives official written notice from a
government indicating that the material violates local laws. More broadly, the Global Network
Initiative (GNI) – a coalition of private-sector companies, investors, and human rights organizations –
has promulgated voluntary guidelines for companies to follow in determining how to respond to
government demands for access to (or censorship of) user data.
Helpfully, the Commission also has recognized the limitations of existing legal instruments for
obtaining evidence in cross-border cases and the desirability of replacing them with a new single
instrument. The recent Commission Green Paper on obtaining evidence in criminal matters from
one Member State to another and securing its admissibility hopefully will serve to open an
important dialogue on this issue. More broadly, the changes in competence introduced by the
Lisbon Treaty and the efforts to improve cross-border law enforcement cooperation under the
Stockholm Program also provide opportunities to create greater coherence in this area.
Because the EU necessarily must address the jurisdictional challenge in order to facilitate criminal
investigations across its 27 Member States, it is in an ideal position to take a leadership role in a
transatlantic, and ultimately global discussion on this issue. One ambitious, but also the most
effective, avenue for a solution would be for the EU to seek a multilateral framework in the form of a
treaty or similar international instrument. While this option would undoubtedly require significant
diplomatic leadership and resources, it offers perhaps the best hope of addressing legitimate
government needs in a coherent fashion while ensuring that consumer and business interests in
privacy and freedom of expression are adequately met on a global scale.
Whatever path the EU follows to resolve these issues, it is essential that its deliberations include not
only representatives from law enforcement and justice, but also representatives of industry,
consumer groups, and other interested stakeholders. Cloud computing will only reach its full
potential if providers can establish data centres and offer services in multiple jurisdictions and cloud
users can enjoy the benefits of these services without fear that each step will invite competing
claims of jurisdiction and government access to data. The rules must balance the legitimate needs of
law enforcement, users and industry, and it is vital that all stakeholders are represented in any
* * *
If Europe is to reap the many economic and social benefits offered by cloud computing, it is
imperative that European consumers, business, and governments have cause for confidence in the
cloud. In short, cloud users must not be compelled to make a trade-off between flexibility and
efficiency on the one hand, and privacy, security, and reliability on the other.
Industry is deeply engaged in developing solutions to these challenges. EU institutions and
European governments too have a critical role to play, by working with stakeholders to ensure the
necessary infrastructure is in place and the regulatory regime – both in Europe and internationally –
is coherent, up-to-date and aligned with current technology.
With the benefit of a modernized technological and regulatory framework, European industry will
have the solid grounding to deliver on the promise of cloud computing and once again expand the
boundaries of innovation. Microsoft is committed to being part of this effort and looks forward to
working with other stakeholders to achieve these goals.
General Counsel, Microsoft
Brussels, January 2010