The European cloud market, from a legal standpoint, is still a fragmented one which leads to a complexity which may impact trust in cloud adoption for companies.
Across 28 European countries, no specific cloud contract laws were found to exist and no ‘cloud cases’ were seen to be reported.
This has resulted in general laws being applied to a cloud environment, which leads to fragmented solutions internationally on various topics, with one key example relating to the debate on the return of data stored in the cloud after a contract’s termination.
There is also confusion on an EU level on how to deal with protected information that is stored in the cloud.
The findings, from a European Commission study conducted by DLA Piper, also concludes that many sector-specific regulatory initiatives in the financial or public sector, for example, further fuel the drive towards cloud regulation.
The study focused on several issues including specific cloud legislation, case law and guidelines; general quality levels of cloud service.
DLA Piper IPT partner Patrick van Eecke said: "This comprehensive study provides a general overview of relevant legislation, case law and administrative guidelines in relation to cloud computing contracts in the European Union and the United States.
"The study shows that the European cloud market, from a legal standpoint, is still a fragmented one which leads to complexity and which may impact trust in cloud adoption for companies. The study results will provide guidance to EU lawmakers when deciding on cloud related policy initiatives."