Data storage concerns are growing in the wake of international spying revelations.

Proposed data storage requirements threaten Brazil’s IT industry

Stephen Perkins

Amid the National Security Agency spying scandal, countries around the world are rushing to enact data protection regulations.

However, as politicians in Brazil prepare to vote on new policies that would put in place guidelines governing the Internet, the country's IT trade body, Brasscom, is warning lawmakers that such rules would end up hurting the nation's economy in multiple ways.

The mandatory local data storage provisions proposed by the Marco Civil da Internet, according to ZDNet, will increase the costs for local IT companies, which could lead them to move their operations elsewhere. Some tech giants including Facebook and Google expressed their reservations back in August when the notion of storing all data locally was floating around. This demand is not only worrying to these large companies, but also to any organization that provides IT services to clients in Brazil such as cloud computing.

"This obligation may drive citizens, businesses and other institutions [to] run the unnecessary risk of being excluded from the enormous potential of the digital economy, hurting the country's ability to create, innovate, create jobs and collect taxes from the proper use of the Internet," Brasscom wrote in a letter sent to the House of Representatives, the Senate and president Dilma Roussef, according to the news source.

This provision could have profound effects on the country's IT industry, which Brasscom predicted earlier this year would grow by 7.3 percent from last year. Many worry data centers will emigrate from Brazil to other countries, resulting in decreased tax revenues and fewer job creation opportunities. While the proposed legislation is more of a knee-jerk reaction to data privacy apprehensions, Brazil could benefit by exploring how other countries have tackled data protection problems through cloud computing solutions.

The preoccupations fomenting in Brazil highlight the broader global importance of secure data storage and off-site data centers. As more of an emphasis is placed on high levels of protection for company and consumer information, the practicality of storage requirements will loom large as businesses, IT and the international community contemplate the best ways to protect sensitive data.

Categories: Data Protection