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Survey Flags Up Cloud Contract Dangers

CloudNews
by Darren Allan, 25 May 2012News

A new study has been conducted by the Queen Mary University of London, showing that users of the cloud can be pretty careless when it comes to service contracts.

The report, from the university's Centre for Commercial Law Studies, observed that diverse types of cloud contract are emerging, meaning that deals between providers can vary substantially.

However, users often click straight through the terms and conditions, taking no notice of these nuances. Which might be excusable for the consumer, to an extent, but in the business world one would assume that terms and contracts might be seen as a tad more meaningful.

Providers may try to push generic contracts on customers which don't fit their needs, or worse still, contracts with rather dubious clauses, the research found. Clauses which, for example, attempt to exonerate the provider when it comes to a service failure.

The Cloud Industry Forum commented on the study: "The report raises concerns. They [end users] fail to assess risk properly, if at all, when adopting low-cost cloud services."

The cloud industry is still relatively immature, however, and it's expected that the cloud contract world will be shaped into something less hit-and-miss, when regulatory bodies increasingly put pressure on firms using badly tailored terms and conditions.

Meanwhile, as ever, read what you're signing up to.

Source: CRN

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