In the wake of the revelations over the NSA's PRISM program, one consequence could be that firms are likely to be much more wary of public cloud service providers.
As questions about who can really access private data are raised, solutions that give organizations more certainty over their digital assets and intellectual property will undoubtedly be high on the agenda.
This is set to be especially true of European enterprises, as these will now be much more suspicious of US-based solutions, as foreign companies and individuals using US-based services and networking equipment have no protection from safeguards that are in place to restrict the information that can be gathered from Americans. As a result, cloud firms could miss out on billions of Euros worth of deals as companies look at alternatives to services such as Google or Amazon Web Services.
Instead, options such as managed cloud and private cloud solutions may be increasingly desired by companies looking for reassurances about the security and privacy of their data. Unlike public clouds, which involve placing a great deal of trust in partners, these solutions can be run on-premises or from data centers leased or directly owned by firms. This will therefore give them the peace of mind they need to take advantage of the business benefits of the cloud without the privacy worries.
These are very real concerns for many European enterprises, as was highlighted by European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes. She was quoted by ZDNet as saying there is likely to be very little trust from businesses if they think they might be spied upon.
"If European cloud customers cannot trust the United States government or their assurances, then maybe they won't trust US cloud providers either. That is my guess. And if I am right then there are multi-billion euro consequences for American companies," she said at a meeting of the European Cloud Partnership board in Tallinn, Estonia.
Ms Kroes added: "The cloud has a lot of potential. But potential doesn't count for much in an atmosphere of distrust."
With this in mind, managed, private and hybrid solutions that offer businesses much tighter control over their data governance may suddenly be a much more attractive option to many firms around the world.