CeBIT 2012: Lack of Cloud standards hinders uptake, says NAB

Cloud standards should be seen as an enabler of innovation, according to NAB head of strategy and innovation, Denis Curran

The National Australia Bank (NAB) has called on the IT industry to work more closely on the development of Cloud standards in order to more fully realise the efficiency and cost benefits of the Cloud.

Speaking at the CeBIT conference in Sydney, NAB head of strategy and innovation, Denis Curran, said standards in the Cloud should be viewed as an enabler.

“You might find that counterintuitive but it is really fundamentally the case with the new set of technologies,” he said.

Curran added that in addition to industry innovation, standards contribute to efficiency and the further development of the banking and finance industries.

“In due course, these standards will help companies achieve cost savings and service innovation by driving multi-vendor solutions that create more competition in the market and being, really, to validate if they are more efficient or capable,” he said.

“The lack of standards is a real impediment to serious adoption of Cloud. Our interest is to have competitive global markets, which bring the benefits of competition, the benefits of innovation, cost effectiveness, choice, and of course, risk management.”

Despite the lack of standards, NAB was pushing ahead with its own use of the Cloud after deciding to tackle issues of security and trust by itself.

“We need to take the lead in developing our technical abilities, specifically preparing for internal Cloud,” he said.

Curran's comments follow recent statements by NAB chief executive, Cameron Clyne, reassuring shareholders that the bank's investment in the Next-Generation Banking IT platform (NGP) was paying off.

Commenting in the bank’s March 2012 Half Year report, CEO Cameron Clyne, said ongoing process simplification around the bank’s ICT had also helped underpin significant increases in customer satisfaction.

“The transformation of the Group’s technology operations environment gathered momentum and is on track to deliver improvements in cost efficiency and a reduction in operational risk,” Clyne said.

“Notably, the Group’s Next-Generation Banking IT platform has successfully implemented a major foundational release of a broad set of underlying application components.”

Earlier this month, NAB, which is member of the Open Data Centre Alliance (ODCA), announced plans for an evaluation of the ODCA’s security provider assurance usage model.

The [xref:|usage model]] audits and ranks external security providers as platinum (military grade), gold (financial services grade), silver (enterprise grade) or bronze (standard grade).

Cloud providers are audited on how they handle vulnerability management, network and firewall isolation, identity management, security incident monitoring, data retention and deletion.

Follow Diana Nguyen on Twitter: @diananguyen9

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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