Personal Issues Re. Cloud Computing and Data Case Study

Excerpt from Case Study :

Personal issues re. Cloud computing and data security

This essay is an attempt on sorting out my conflictual feelings on cloud computing and data security. These include emotional investment on the subject, intellectual curiosity, advocacy, and bias. The following also explains my attraction towards the research.

Cloud computing is the use of computing resources (both hardware and software) that are delivered as a service over the Internet. I certainly have a mix of feelings when it comes to the issue of cloud computing. At the top of the list is the realization of the possibility that the entire computer enterprise provides little privacy

Medical centers, for instance, are increasingly using electronic software systems as their way of storing patient files, but I think that this is less secure than traditional methods in the past where one physician simply faxed the file to another for consideration -- and only one other saw it. Here, files can be accidently opened simultaneously by electronic transmission that passes through several hands. At the same time, I know of various individuals who are hesitant to divulge their private medical information -- as they are asked to do over the Internet. We are assured of privacy and given conventions such as HIPAA and so forth, but each of these policies can be unintentionally breached despite the best of intentions and the most through training in privacy laws.

So I have this bias of the vulnerability of data security.

At the same time, I have a certain intellectual curiosity on the matter. I followed with interest the ethical case of Jason Ellsworth, a U.S. commander, who was killed whilst serving in Iraq in 2005. His father wished to make a memorial for him and, therefore, asked Yahoo for access to his e-mail correspondence whilst in Iraq. Yahoo refused citing their contract of privacy with users. The case was brought to court, and Ellsworth won. Controversy ensued that made front lines in many papers. On the one hand, readers argued that Yahoo was right: it had promised confidentiality to its users and could not break that promise, come what may. On the other hand, there were others who argued that the family may profit from release of correspondence and that, therefore, it should be transmitted. (HU, 2004)

This is also a case of certain networks who play around with data security laying the laws of its perimeters. How far does extending privacy to data exist, and when should this guarantee be broken. Those who condemned Yahoo, for instance, and supported Ellsworth argued that more people would be made happy by release of the e-mails than were…

Sources Used in Document:

Hu, J (2004) Yahoo denies family access to dead marine's e-mail. CNet

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