Seems Australian Businesses Aren’t Fussed About Off-Shore Cloud

Seems Australian Businesses Aren’t Fussed About Off-Shore Cloud

A common concern expressed about cloud computing in Australia is that it’s not viable to use cloud services located offshore, either for questionable legal reasons or because of performance. But that concern doesn’t seem to actually be impacting buying decisions.

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A survey of Australia businesses by Telsyte found that two-thirds of businesses with a cloud presence do use an offshore provider. Of the CIOs quizzed for the Australian Infrastructure & Cloud Computing Market Study 2015, 46 per cent said there were no restrictions placed on using overseas services.

That doesn’t mean hosting locally won’t bring benefits — but with so much of the emphasis on cloud deployments being around cost savings, it’s not surprising cheaper offshore options remain popular.


  • I often hear the “but it’s illegal to put it in the cloud cos it might go offshore” argument trotted out. Would love to know how that information ever got traction.

    So with all that in mind, I wonder how (the big) cloud providers handle geofencing/blocking etc? If I, for example, sign up a 25 seat business for an Office 365 plan in the US (can I, even? Through a reseller?) and then choose to access it in Australia, will I be breaching any T&C’s? And more importantly, what’s the cost saving?
    I’m off to do some reading now.

    • The tenant can live anywhere really, although do you want your Skype and email taking another trip around the world? Probably not.

      You also need to assign a country of usage for each users, which needs to be truthful. Although I doubt Microsoft will care about a 25 users tenant.

    • Probably below Gave those arguments some traction. Taken from Vic Gov CIO council Cloud-Based ICT Services Checklist

      “4. Do you understand the relevant data sovereignty risks?
      Critical to any decision to engage a particular cloud service is to know where the data resides. There should be
      an awareness that some cloud service providers: store their client data in locations other than where their
      business is or appears to be based; move data without notice from location to location to accommodate
      operational issues such as load balancing; and/or simply resell the cloud service of another provider, further
      distancing the control of the data from the owner.
      The difficulties with data not residing in Victorian or Australian jurisdiction are complex, and depend on the
      type of data stored and any legal or reputational overlay that may apply to that data. It is out of the scope of
      this guideline to provide advice in this area,2 however an evaluation of the provider’s storage arrangements
      needs to be undertaken before any decision to proceed with a given cloud service.”

      Not sure if you can see it there but it suggests that you look at appendix 2 and then in that there is loads of links in that.
      Again this may only apply to Vic Gov but everyone should take things lie this in to consideration especially if they are store personal information etc. in the cloud

    • I would expect legal issues for government organisations to have their data hosted overseas but for your average local business I don’t see why they’d have any issues with going offshore.

  • 46% of what? should be the question.
    46% of 20, 30. Percentage means nothing unless you supply the total number.

  • It got traction because businesses are subject to the Privacy Act.
    It’s not an argument… it’s legislation.

    • The Privacy Act does not preclude the offshoring of data. That is something trotted our by local providers for marketing. See privacy principal 8. You just have to take reasonable steps.

      • Any decent CIO isn’t going to want to rely on a definition of ‘reasonable’ steps when their ass in on the line for ensuring their company doesn’t make the front page news for a data breach. Their bosses or customers are not going to care whose fault it was if that happens.

        Many businesses also have any number of commercial and/or regulatory conditions over and above the Privacy Act that dictates what they can and can’t do. eg. any company operating under some sort of license agreement.

  • We use Google Apps for education but don’t store any student information in the cloud. That stays on our local shares.

    One of the IT teachers accounts for about a third of all data hosted by Drive. We have unlimited storage.

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