September 13, 2012 - 5:35 PM
CIA-backed In-Q-Tel this week made a strategic investment Huddle, a UK-based provider of cloud collaboration software, and all I could think was "how ironic is this!"
At a time when my consulting clients and classroom students constantly ask about the impact and suitability of the cloud in their operating environment, and the compliance ramifications of internationally-distributed infrastructures, here is an arm of the United States government investing in a company that is based overseas and is predicated on enabling collaboration without boundaries.
The idea is certainly sound, for the economics and efficiencies associated with cloud computing in many ways make it the model solution for large enterprises – like the government – that have so many potentially interdependent departments, so large a technology budget, and so great a geographical footprint. And, it is, of course, by definition, entirely consistent with the Federal Cloud Computing Strategy as outlined by U.S. Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra in a paper last year.
What doesn't seem consistent, however, is how a federal agency steeped in security and secrecy for the protection of its home country can invest in a foreign company whose flagship product is steeped in information sharing! No doubt the devil, as it always is, is in the details, and given who is providing funding, we will likely never really know what those details are. But clients and students take note: if cloud-based collaboration seems good enough for the CIA, then it is probably worth a look by you.
Cloud computing is one of the many key concepts covered by the Certified Information Professional exam. You can see my free training module on it here; for an in-person take on it and the rest of the story, feel free to contact me here.
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