|Courtesy of Apple|
Apple’s announcement will no doubt fuel the already rapid growth of cloud computing. Despite the many risks associated with this technology, the business of online data storage is booming.
Employers are increasingly shifting to cloud computing systems to enable workers to access work information and files from any computer, anywhere, anytime. There are many potential business benefits to this technology, including costs savings, but there are also inherent legal risks. Numerous laws, including HIPAA, trade secrets laws, and the Fair Credit Reporting Act, among others, could be implicated when an employer chooses to use online data storage for employment and business data. As usual, technology and businesses are well ahead of the law on this topic, and there is a shortage of clear guidance in this area. At a minimum, employers should make sure they put into place carefully crafted agreements (think trade secrets and confidentiality provisions), policies (is cloud computing described and covered in your technology and/or social media policies?) and employee communication strategies and plans (make sure employees know and understand your position on the issue) before venturing into the “cloud” in cyberspace.