A tough surveillance law cost New Zealand a Google-sponsored SDN test, according to reports.
Victoria University in Wellington, the Reannz research network, Google and the Energy Sciences Network at Berkeley, California, were collaborating on an SDN research project for several years, according to a report by Rob O'Neill on ZDnet.
But New Zealand's new Telecommunications Interception Capability and Security Act (TICSA) requires network operators to notify security agencies of changes to their networks. That's impractical for SDN, where network changes are constant and made on the fly, notes ZDnet.
So after seeking relief from agencies involved and failing, and facing penalties of up to NZ$500,000 (US$378,167) per day, the companies picked up house and moved to Australia.
TICSA is "denting innovation and scaring off overseas investment," writes Juha Saarinen at The New Zealand Herald:
Good intentions aside, TICSA introduces a layer of bureaucracy and delay for network operators who want to be nimble and fleet-footed, but face ten to twenty days of waiting as the [New Zealand National Cyber Security Centre] ponders on whether or not to approve of network configuration changes...
We've missed the boat now because changing TICSA would take a long time. By then, SDN/NFV will be established business, earning some other country than New Zealand billions of dollars and kudos.
Protecting against crime and terrorism are important goals, but they need to be kept in balance with the needs of running an economy (and a society, and generally living life). New Zealand is paying a high price -- too high! -- for security legislation that makes it difficult to compete in a hot, emerging marketplace.