The Fine Print in Cloud Adoption

Some news filtered through the web yesterday about the LA City Council that voted to move the city’s 30,000 email users to a system provided by Google, but only after a provision that the city be compensated if there is security breach in the data held on Google’s servers.

This news tells me two things. One, cloud computing has arrived, especially if a public sector agency is going to embrace it. Typically, technology moves slower than a turtle in the public sector. Secondly, there still is a bit of hesitancy to move sensitive data to the cloud as indicated by the loud and clear provision in the contract that address potential data breaches. I'm wondering if the city would make the same request if they were dealing with an EMC, IBM, etc. Would it be part of the press release? Would it be part of their messaging that was delivered to news channels via a press release?

Probably not.

Kudo's to the city for riding the cloud wave. It's an aggressive move, but one that makes total sense. What I question however, was why the felt the need to make the security breach provision such a big PR deal.

What are your thoughts? I'm guessing most understand the need for the provision, but is it necessary for it to be a main focus of the story? What does that really say about cloud computing and confidence in it?