Balancing governance, risk, and compliance

4 min readJun 16, 2021

Concerns over data privacy and data compliance are driving sovereign states to rethink their infrastructure

According to Forrester Research’s Predictions 2021 report, the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35 percent to $120 billion in 2021, as the cloud continues to “take centre stage” in the recovery from the pandemic.

However, growing fears over data privacy and compliance with strict data protection laws could potentially stunt this predicted growth rate of public cloud adoption as sovereign states consider moving their enterprise data on-premise.

New and updated national data privacy and data localisation laws are fundamentally altering the way that companies can conduct business internationally, and this is impacting on their attitude to cloud infrastructure. The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and China’s Cybersecurity Law — two of the most comprehensive packages of data privacy regulations — have already had cascading impacts on businesses in these markets and all of their trading partners. And this is just the beginning. In Autumn last year, Japan announced that it is making changes to its Protection of Personal Information (AAPI) Act, tightening controls of international data transfer from 2022 to bring it in line with GDPR and over 70 other countries have passed new or updated data privacy laws in the last few years that include some form of data localization.

The challenge with the cloud is that it runs across a distributed infrastructure and providers tend to store data in technically and commercially practical locations. In light of recent enterprise data breaches and incidents of data misuse, the dispersed nature of the cloud leaves businesses with a number of concerns such as: where exactly their data is stored and who ensures the sovereignty of their data (them or their cloud partner?) and how can they be assured of data privacy?

With the instinctive (but not exclusive) solution being a move to on-premise cloud, privacy concerns may ultimately see a demise in public Cloud’s appeal. Wire understands these concerns, which is why its secure cloud collaboration solution is available in a range of deployment options, including private cloud deployment, full on-premises solutions and public-cloud versions all of which interconnect seamlessly.

Innovators are needed to drive change

When it comes to garnering trust, historically it has tended to be the well established tech companies — as opposed to new startups — that end users have been most inclined to trust. Customer faith in these brands has actively helped drive adoption of their own new technologies, as loyal end users have followed them and their innovations. However, as a result of recent data breaches and less than transparent data privacy policies by some of the established collaboration platform brands, end user loyalty isn’t quite the ‘sure bet’ that it once was. Loyalty is waning and critically, end users have shown they have little reservation in switching to a new brand if it is deemed more private or secure.

Indeed, it is the younger, innovative companies that are entering the market with a privacy and security ‘by design’ approach, that are the ones disrupting the industry and bringing about change. With their commitment to transparency, zero-trust security frameworks, end-to-end encryption and clear data privacy rules they are bringing security to a new level — and impelling other industry players to do the same. And the disruption they are bringing is not merely technological. They also bring a new approach and mindset which looks towards collaboration within the industry to collectively combat the security issues that afflict and threaten its success.

Across industries, it is the ‘Teslas’ with their agile and pioneering mindsets, not the ‘Mercedes’ that are transforming sectors. In the case of the secure collaboration space it is the younger, more innovative players with their more secure and more effective ways of working that are changing the industry for good.

How Wire, as a leader of the MLS working group, is driving the industry standard for secure end-to-end encryption

Wire’s focus is on providing the most secure enterprise communications tool possible. While mainstream collaboration tools seek to provide features for both consumers and businesses across all verticals, Wire’s commitment to the enterprise market means that it only develops tools and features that help its customer achieve their main goal: to use an effective, secure communications platform that protects their corporate data and ensures it is not leaked through calls and communications.

One key protocol Wire is actively working to develop is Messaging Layer Security or MLS for short. This new protocol is designed to firm up the security of enterprise messaging platforms by employing end-to-end encryption within group communication. MLS allows employees to communicate across devices, within the cloud. MLS offers maximum fluidity, because it exists within a federated environment, with no central cloud needed for its implementation. This opens up the possibility of using multiple devices in a secure environment, something that many employees have been doing for some time in insecure environments.

MLS is primed to be of critical importance in enterprise collaboration. As the last 12 months have shown, decisions over the use of enterprise messaging platforms are increasingly being driven by awareness of issues around privacy and security. Enterprises need to be in sync with and ready to meet these demands in the workplace. Wire, with its pioneering implementation of MLS, is poised to be at the centre of this shift; bridging the communication preferences of today’s workforce with the unparalleled security that businesses demand.

But beyond ensuring its own fortress security, Wire is actively encouraging a wider cross-industry commitment to working together to enable greater collaboration and interoperability between technology platforms. Only by adopting an industry-standard approach can providers truly assure end users that the tech they are using is trustworthy and fully adept at handling and protecting their enterprise data.

Try our internal communications software for free today. Simply create a team and start communicating and collaborating securely in minutes.

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