Light Reading

Euronews: Telenor Gets Twitchy Over Cloud Data

Paul Rainford

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Telefónica on the prowl in Brazil; AlcaLu lands Cameroon LTE TDD contract; Blue Jeans Network launches in UK.

  • Norway's incumbent carrier Telenor ASA (Nasdaq: TELN) revamped its cloud services strategy because of international security concerns, according to online IT publication (in Norwegian). Telenor had previously decided to use the Office 365 cloud service from Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), but that would have meant customer data being held outside Norway. However, as a result of growing customer security concerns and the fall-out of the Edward Snowden digital spying revelations about NSA snooping, Telenor is migrating its customers to a home-grown cloud service that is similar to Office 365 and hosted in Norway, according to the report. Telenor still offers Office 365 as an option to any customers that demand that particular service, but makes it clear to those customers that their data will be held outside Norway. (See Another Day, Another Domestic Spying Revelation, Euronews: Spain Joins Prism Club and Telenor, Microsoft Integrate Cloud Services.)

  • Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF) is actively scouting for acquisitions in Brazil to put it on a more equal footing with the Latin American telecom empire run by billionaire Carlos Slim, according to unnamed sources cited on Bloomberg. The report says that Telefónica has had discussions with a several companies, Grupo Iusacell SA and Grupo Televisa SAB among them.

  • Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) has landed a LTE TDD contract with YooMee Africa, a Swiss-owned mobile broadband operator that is based in Cameroon but which has ambitions to make its presence felt throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The value of the deal was not disclosed. (See Alcatel-Lucent Wins LTE TDD Deal in Africa.)

  • Cloud-based videoconferencing service provider Blue Jeans Network has officially launched in the UK, although it already claims to have almost 700 customers that use on aggregate about 10 million minutes per year in Britain, making it the company's second-biggest market after the US. The service claims to be the only one in the videoconferencing market that can overcome the sector's interoperability hurdle by connecting multiple end user tools and applications (including Skype, Microsoft Lync, H.323 systems, and Cisco TelePresence) into a single meeting. The launch in the UK is part of the company's international expansion, fuelled by a recent $50 million funding round, and to lead the charge into Europe the company has hired former Cisco executive James Campanini as its regional vice president and general manager. (See Seizing the Mobile Video Conferencing Opportunity.)

  • MegaFon , Russia's second-largest mobile operator, posted third-quarter profits up 3 percent year-on-year to 15.3 billion roubles (US$466 million), which, reports Reuters, matched analysts' expectations.

  • Belgacom SA (Euronext: BELG) has taken time out from venting its anger over an ongoing data-spying controversy to buy one of three 4G licenses at auction for €120 million ($161 million). See this press release for more information. The other operators to gain 4G licenses are Mobistar and BASE.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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    User Rank: Light Sabre
    11/14/2013 | 8:37:46 AM
    Re: This could be the start of a trend....
    Totally agree with you Ray. Telcos the world over are having to review their cloud strategies. They need to know precisely where their data and customer data is stored, precisely who has access to it, and precisely on what terms. So long as there is doubt, there will be more reviews of the kind Telenor are undertaken. It's not even as if Norway is a bubbling cauldron of Anti-Americanism either. There are non-trivial implications for large parts of America's high-tech industry for sure.

    User Rank: Blogger
    11/13/2013 | 8:23:27 AM
    This could be the start of a trend....
    There has been talk of closed national networks in Europe to counter unwanted acces to communications, but this instance at Telenor is more 'real' and more 'now' -- it's hard to imagine this impact is not being felt elsewhere too.


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