Further to the EU Commission communication on “Unleashing the potential of cloud computing in Europe” the Commission adopted a European Cloud Computing Strategy (you can find more information here) which is also based on a better understanding of the existing national legislations applying to cloud computing contracts. In this respect, the EU Commission requested DLA Piper in Europe (European Member States – excluding Croatia) and the US to carry out a study of the current legislations on the matter.
The study (carried out in three work packages) resulted in a report (you can download it here) which provides an overview of the current legislations, case laws and/or administrative guidelines regulating cloud computing contracts. The report also addresses whether key contractual legal issues are adequately dealt with at the national level.
We focused on: (i) legal qualification of cloud contracts, (ii) service level agreements, (iii) acceptable use policy, (iv) processing of personal data, (v) intellectual property rights in the cloud sector, (vi) liability of cloud computing parties, (vii) term, termination and consequences of termination of a cloud contract (viii) unilateral modification of the cloud contract and (ix) security requirements in the cloud.
Albeit no “cloud law” exists in all 28 investigated countries, there are still many sector specific initiatives which have been considered at national level.
Said initiatives could no doubt inspire Italy, which is still facing uncertainties with regard to the cloud computing contracts as no specific legislation nor indication from the regulators (except from the Italian Data Protection Authority) has yet been issued.