Does BSA “Cloud Readiness” Countries List Make Sense Or Has Just Initiated Another Debate?

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) has published a list of cloud readiness top-ranked countries in its annual ‘Global Cloud Scorecard’ report. According to the report, Japan, Australia, U.S., Germany and Singapore are top 5 countries in descending order, while rising markets of South Africa, Indonesia, Brazil, Thailand and Vietnam appear at the bottom.

BSA is an alliance of various software dealers ranging from Microsoft, Oracle to IBM and Apple, and is famous for warning small enterprises from using pirated versions of software. The organization just publicized its next Global Cloud Scorecard that ranks the top cloud-friendly countries based on their lawmaking and regulatory policies.

The criterion which the BSA followed for ranking is interesting in a way that it considers metrics not directly linked to cloud computing. For instance, for intellectual property rights, the company states: “Providers of cloud computing and digital economy technologies and services, as with other highly innovative products, rely on a combination of patents, copyrights, trade secrets, and other forms of intellectual property protection. Thus, to encourage investments in cloud research and development, as well as infrastructure, IP laws must provide strong incentives for these investments and clear protection and vigorous enforcement against misappropriation and infringement.”

The BSA considered the following points while computing the “cloud readiness” countries ranking:

  1. Intellectual Property Rights: This criterion is given the highest priority as BSA is in favor of what Canada, Russia and India did, so it has also raised the scale.
  2. Data Privacy: BSA likes fair games and is totally against violation of data privacy, and that is why when Singapore in its “broad, principles-based” passed a data privacy law, it jumped from 10th position to 5 in BSA rankings.
  3. Security: It explains the BSA security policy both in terms of national harmony and other factors like censorship. It is the reason Russia was placed in top 5, as it announced internet censorship rules in 2012.
  4. Cyber Crime: It mainly deals with prevention of cyber crimes and is an important factor to consider in cloud computing. The recent repeated cyber attacks have raised the importance of measures to avoid cyber crime.
  5. Promoting Free Trade: BSA is much concerned why countries are hesitant to buy equipment from international suppliers who’re surprisingly, BSA potential members. But since most of the cloud technology is hosted by USA, BSA worry seems logical.
  6. Infrastructure: It is another highly weighed criterion, which appears directly linked to cloud computing.

These six major points which BSA considered while ranking “cloud readiness” countries of the world, hold views from rational to arguable, and show the cloud expectations of big technology giants.

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