Microsoft Unveils Security Policy Doc for Lawmakers

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Microsoft has launched a major new policy document designed to lobby governments into legislating and regulating towards “a trusted, responsible, and inclusive cloud.”

A Cloud for Global Good was unveiled at an event in Dublin where CEO Satya Nadella revealed the Redmond giant has spent $3 billion on building up its cloud datacenter capacity in Europe, including $1 billion in the past year.

The 200+ page tomb contains a total of 78 public-policy recommendations in 15 categories – many of them devoted to privacy and cybercrime-related issues.

It recommends governments establish “clear, enforceable privacy frameworks that include strong privacy protections” based on long-standing principles – for example that users should have the right to choose whether data is collected and how it’s used.

Microsoft also urged governments to strike a better balance between public safety and personal privacy and freedoms, reiterating that any regulatory or legal reforms should not undermine encryption security.

In a nod to the current Privacy Shield and GDPR/Brexit debates, the document also suggests lawmakers should promote trade rules that protect cross-border data flows and minimize disruptions to the free flow of info.

There’s also advice on creating secure and reliable cloud services; harmonizing cybercrime laws internationally and improving coordination between law enforcers; and “developing and implementing international cybersecurity norms,” seeking the input of the private sector.

“Clearly, we’ve reached a critical crossroads where we must rethink how people interact, companies conduct business, and governments protect public safety, manage economic growth, and deliver services,” wrote Nadella and president Brad Smith in the preface to the book.

“At Microsoft, we are fundamentally optimistic about the future. But we also recognize that the cloud must be used to drive societal and economic benefits. What’s needed is a balanced set of policy and technology solutions that will promote positive change and ensure that the benefits of cloud computing are broadly shared.”

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