Whilst the US government has been commended on its bold uptake of the cloud, smaller nations have been advised to get a move on.

Juan Carlos Soto, a senior advisor to the US government on the use of cloud computing, expressed his concern about the slow approach by some, and suggested the UK government use the expertise of industry professionals to push the technology through.

“I would imagine in the UK that bringing in experts from industry, sometimes from academia and even other government agencies, perhaps those that were early adopters, could lead to very good recommendations,” he said.

Soto acknowledged that nations would always move at a pace that suits them, and that issues of security have to be organised first.

“No solution is perfect and some data will not be suitable for the cloud, so I would advise any government or enterprise to make sure they understand the cloud service they are intending to use and whether the security implications are acceptable,” he said.

Soto also unlined the importance of the cloud in terms of the changing IT landscape, by comparing it to the introduction of the Internet and web services, “Cloud is that fundamental a shift.”

The US government has estimated savings of about $6bn from its annual IT budget of $80bn. When smaller countries look to this example, it is not a figure that can be ignored.

“I don’t know where it will end up from a terminology stand point. ‘Cloud’ happens to be a very convenient collective term, but the benefits of a service you use in a utility-like manner … are compelling to any company.” Said Soto.

In other words – moving to the cloud is inevitable – whether done boldly, or otherwise.