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Cloud computing is industrial espionage

Schadenfreude is not an honorable virtue. When I read the reports on Spiegel Online about the Prism spying program of the U.S. NSA (National Security Agency), I had to think of all my critics: Why doesn't this CIO dare to go into the cloud? He who laughs last laughs best.
July 12, 2013
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

It must be a chaotic time with my dear colleagues who have their CRM-Applications, E-mail-systems and whole ERP-applications have moved to the cloud.

"You're in a good mood again today," even the best of wives observes, sitting down with me to read my monthly E-3 column first.

I am happy to explain to her what happened: Exact details are not yet known, but the fact is that American intelligence services are not only massively interested in the Data streams at Internet but have also found ways to make these Data without much fuss.

"Yeah, yeah," my wife says knowingly, "I've heard that too. I'm just curious what they want to find in my Facebook account?"

I'm not sure it's just about countering terrorist actions. In the Internet can also find other interesting things and since Cloud computing there is sometimes the entire E-mail-traffic of a company.

Industrial espionage has probably been around since Cloud computing has become much easier. In the press at the moment you only read about Social media and mentions companies like Facebook, Google and Microsoft.

But Google, Microsoft, Apple, salesforce and also SAP offer Internet services that work with NSA-technology can be tapped.

It is not yet known whether the Prism spying program will also affect business applications or only Social Media-Applications.

Ultimately, it would technically make no difference whether a Facebook account is tapped or a company's project plan in the Microsoft Cloud.

Critical factor - Cloud

I had never thought of the dimensions that are currently becoming public through Prism. But my shyness towards Cloud computing I will not deny.

Unfortunately, I haven't had a chance to talk to my colleague from Hilti on the phone yet. He has lifted many business-critical applications into the cloud with SAP Business ByDesign.

Now I don't believe that the U.S. NSA direct access to SAP-data centers, but what is not officially permitted may at least be technically conceivable.

Accordingly, it is a vision of horror for me to CRM- and mailServer a Cloud Computing-providers such as Google or Microsoft.

Already in my column from last June I wrote about the madness of a Hana Enterprise Cloud and many colleagues have agreed with me in both senses:

  1. Never move the corporate books and business critical applications to the cloud
  2. No confidence regarding Cloud computing for SAP.

Our esteemed Walldorf have consistently made every effort over the past few years to Data CenterKnowledge dismantled and sold, among others to T-Systems.

Now, of all things Hasso Plattner and Vishal Sikka make believe that corporate data in a SAP-cloud are safe.

There are SAP-partners such as itelligence, Freudenberg IT, T-Systems or all-for-one, which in recent years have consistently invested in ITOutsourcing and Hosting have invested.

There may be a certain cloud competence here. However, as long as Vishal Sikka with Andreas von Bechtolsheim is the Hana Enterprise Cloud presents, I am very concerned about data security.

Not everywhere where Cloud computing on it, must also be a NSA-hacked cloud cuckoo home be present.

My schadenfreude is only for my naive colleagues who, without any doubt, have been able to understand the entire E-mail-traffic have moved to the cloud.

What happens now with the CRMData in the salesforce cloud?

Is this CRMCloud Computing also already from the NSA been corrupted?

How much ridicule did I have to endure? I was called a backward and dithering CIO just because I didn't blindly strive for cloud cuckoo land.

But I am the Cloud ComputingTechnology in no way averse: Private Cloud computing is an important and correct option for virtualization.

And we are seriously discussing building a private Hana Enterprise Cloud for our Business Suite. I have already received corresponding signals in the direction of Gerd Oswald and Bernd Leukert dropped off because the concept and the technology are convincing.

What there certainly won't be, however, is an Internet connection to my private cloud cuckoo's home for the NSAnot even for Google.


Our mysterious, anonymous columnist.

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