The Cloud Security Alliance, an organization devoted to promoting safe, robust and secure cloud computing solutions, recently expanded to the UK and Ireland.
The CSA UK & Ireland recently held its first official meeting in London. In his speech to the inaugural meeting, CSA UK & Ireland president Des Ward told his audience the growth of cloud computing has made the technology directly relevant to the lives of people everywhere.
“The cloud affects us all,” Ward said. “Consumers, business, everyone has an investment in the cloud – whether they know it or not.”
Ward called for all interested stakeholders to invest time and resources in raising awareness of the risks and security concerns involved in cloud computing.
According to Ward, “parents and business leaders alike” need to learn how to manage cloud security risks. Given the importance of cloud computing and the centrality of cloud security, Ward added that he would be happy to see other organizations, similar to the CSA, come into being.
The newly formed CSA UK & Ireland is based on the U.S. branch of the organization, which was founded in 2008, in the wake of a security practitioners’ conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.
According to an eWeek report, the decision to form a UK and Ireland chapter of the CSA was taken in January. CSA UK & Ireland vice president Gerry O’Neill told eWeek the organization planned its inaugural meeting in just a few weeks, in order to enable preparations for a larger event, set to be held in April.
O’Neill expressed satisfaction with the first meeting’s turnout. “The attendance today shows how much interest there is in cloud information risk management,” he told eWeek.
While attendees at the event were united in their interest in cloud security, O’Neill chose to ban use of the term “security” at the meeting, according to eWeek. The term, according to O’Neill, “clouds the issue.”
O’Neill explained that the word “security” conjures up particular concepts in many people’s minds. These include traditional security measures, such as firewalls, parental controls and antivirus software. According to O’Neill, what the CSA hopes to address goes beyond these traditional components of “security.”
“The way in which information can be stored and accessed, with or without our knowledge, is another element of security which is receiving less attention than the technology,” he said.
The CSA UK & Ireland will hold its next event on April 21, at the Infosecurity Europe 2011 conference in London.