Corporate student data privacy pledge

Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) and Brad Smith, The Hill,  Thursday, October 23, 2014

The intersection of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act of 1998, a growing number of state laws, district policies, vendor contracts, and privacy policies create a situation in which it is hard to tell what protections and rights exist for children or for adults. To witness this trend is to worry that legitimate privacy concerns threaten to derail the potential of education technology to improve personalized learning.

NIST spotlights five actors in the cloud

Judith Myerson, TechRepublic,  Thursday, October 23, 2014

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) cloud computing standards roadmap describes five cloud actors: consumer, provider, auditor, broker, and carrier. Each actor interacts with another actor depending on the role the actor performs in the cloud. Here's a rundown of each actor category.

Android’s recent encryption announcement doesn’t protect your data

Karen Evans by Karen Evans, KE&T Partners
Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Apple’s default encryption announcement contained a notable distinction in the fine print. They promised not to read the content of your email messages. Not only will Apple’s default encryption protect your email from being accessed by governmental entities without permission, but Apple will not retrieve or use the content of your email for their own purposes. Android’s announcement did not offer the same protection to users. They did not make the same pledge which could be related to the fact that Google’s main source of revenue is derived from ad placements based on the content of user emails and searches.

How the Cloud Can Help Our Government Innovate

Jane Snowdon, Wired,  Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Currently, much of the dialogue seems focused on the infrastructure, or data center consolidation and decisions about what to move to the cloud. Those are important issues and require the attention of CIOs and the IT community. But as the federal government shifts to the cloud, we must not lose sight of how this new infrastructure can be a tool for innovation. So far, exactly how the cloud can spur innovation seems to be missing from the narrative.

Microsoft's Azure makeover features Dell hardware

Peter Judge, Datacenter Dynamics,  Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Microsoft gave its Azure cloud offering a makeover on Monday, with new virtual machine classes in its public cloud, and a partnership with Dell to sell hardware pre-configured for on-premises Azure clouds. The new G family virtual machines are a challenge to Amazon Web Services (AWS) with Microsoft's vice president for cloud, Scott Guthrie (below), promising that with up to 450GB of RAM,

How effective is cloud-provided encryption?

Paige Leidig, SC Magazine,  Tuesday, October 21, 2014

As concerns continue to mount over data breaches, data security, and regulatory compliance, particularly in public cloud environments, a growing number of cloud service providers (CSPs) are stepping up to the plate with beefed-up encryption offerings to assuage their customers' concerns. The additional encryption these CSPs now provide can certainly aid in protecting sensitive data from some types of attacks, but is CSP-provided cloud data encryption enough to secure your data and achieve compliance?

For Microsoft, Cloud Business Looks More Promising Than Mobile

Nick Wingfield, new York Times,  Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Cloud computing offers a different picture of Microsoft’s ability to make progress in new markets. A lot of companies are vying to be cloud contenders, and all of them are chasing Amazon, the Internet retailer that years ago began renting out its vast computing infrastructure to other companies and quickly became a leader in the field. But despite being a laggard in cloud computing, Microsoft has established real credibility.

Most cloud apps flout EU data protection rules – study

John Leyden, The Register,  Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Three in four cloud services do not conform to the current EU Data Protection Directive, according to a new study. Enterprise cloud visibility firm Skyhigh Networks found that nearly three-quarters (72 per cent) of the cloud services used by European organisations do not meet the requirements of the current privacy regulations, with data being sent to countries without adequate levels of data protection. The transfer of personally identifiable information outside Europe meant many services were operating at odds with the EU Data Protection Directive.

Hacks, CDM continue to push cyber to forefront of CIOs' priorities

Jason Miller, Federal News Radio,  Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Customs and Border Protection directorate in the Homeland Security Department is taking a two-pronged approach to protecting its systems and data in the cloud. First, CBP is relying on third-party audits of cloud service providers through the Federal Risk Authorization and Mitigation Program (FedRAMP). Second, it's sending its own staff of experts in to audit how vendors protect systems and government data. CBP's focus on cyber in the cloud and really across the board follows the ever-growing trend across government. Now more than ever, federal chief information officers are paying more attention to cybersecurity.

New report: Commerce Department can improve data access, quality, distribution

Dibya Sarkar, FierceGovernmentIT,  Monday, October 20, 2014

A new report says the Commerce Department, which provides government data to more companies than any other federal agency, can make improvements in several areas involving data access, quality and dissemination. It outlined seven areas – data discovery and findability, access, quality, collection and sharing, interoperability storage and dissemination, and users as customers – that should be improved.