The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has cautioned that while selecting Cloud Service Providers, all business entities must ensure that their selected service providers do not offer services through their data centers located in hostile countries such as India and Israel, etc.

According to the SECP’s Cloud Adoption Guidelines issued for Incorporated Companies/Business Entities, cloud computing is a technological framework that offers convenient on-demand access to a shared pool of resources, including servers, storage, and applications, over the Internet.

 

The new guidelines will be applicable to all the Business Entities (BEs) incorporated with the SECP under the Companies Act, 2017, the Securities Act, 2015, the Insurance Ordinance, 2000, and the NBFC Regulations, 2008, etc.

The BEs that are incorporated with the SECP but supervised by sector-specific regulators need to ensure compliance with the sector-specific guidelines on Cloud-based services by their regulators. These guidelines pertain to the all-new IT, migrating legacy applications, and data to the cloud. They become effective from June 1, 2021. However, earlier adaption is encouraged.

The SECP stated that several free cloud computing options exist for emails, document management, and even CRM and ERP. The BEs simply need to pay only its usage exceeds the number of user count or storage space.

Some cloud services providers also offer users free trial periods. The BEs must review the services before deciding to buy them, and assess if the cybersecurity requirements (based on the Pakistan Cloud-First Policy 2021, National Cybersecurity Policy 2021, sector-specific guidelines, authentication requirements, and other specific cybersecurity measures and regulations) are met by the cloud model under consideration.

The BEs incorporated with the SECP are organizations that would typically have many employees. These business owners are well aware of cloud computing and have adopted cloud computing for its economies of scale, ease of use, and low cost.

Many BEs have been on the leading edge of public cloud advocacy and adoption. Cloud facilitates the reduction/elimination of capital expenditures (Capex), and provides flexibility to launch or scale a business. However, it will be a business decision of the BEs based on the control of their data and cost savings in the short versus long term.

The SECP said that there is a strong demand for cloud adoption by BEs for cloud-based server capacity, information and database management, security, system and user access management, ERP, CRM, and collaboration tools. BEs need to focus on the areas of trust, security, legal, compliance, and organizational issues throughout the adoption process.

 

While performing the planning in the adoption of cloud in business, every individual in business has different opinions. Overall, the respondents that are willing to consider the purchasing of cloud solutions and needs are recorded and considered to identify the actual requirement of cloud adoption in business.

The BEs must understand how to gain access to the services and get huge benefits by using these cloud services.