No, There Hasn't Been A Big Shift Away From US Datacenters... Yet
from the give-it-time dept
Despite speculation that the recent PRISM revelations would result in a mass exodus from American data centers and web hosting companies, Netcraft has not yet seen any evidence of this. Within the most popular 10 thousand sites, Netcraft witnessed only 40 sites moving away from US-based hosting companies. Contrary to some people's expectations, 47 sites moved to the US, which actually resulted in a net migration to the US.Of course, I think it's way too early to conclude much about this at this point for a variety of reasons. First, we're still learning about the extent of the surveillance, and some of the more damning revelations have really only just started to trickle out. Second, moving your hosting services is not generally something you just do overnight. It can take quite a bit of time. Third -- and this is a big one -- I'd argue the bigger concern is less about companies moving, but that the next generation of users will never agree to use US servers. And, finally (and perhaps most importantly), prior to these revelations, the market for more private and secure hosting and communications was fairly limited. Some have pointed out that even for those who wish to leave US services, it's not clear where to go.
This trend is also reflected by the entire web server survey, where a net sum of 270 thousand sites moved to the US from other countries (in total, 3.9 million sites moved to the US, while 3.6 million moved from the US). Germany was the most popular departure country, with nearly 1.2 million sites moving from German hosting companies. This was followed by Canada, where 803 thousand sites hopped across the border to the US.
But I am expecting that's going to change. One thing that these revelations have made clear is that current solutions are not as secure or private as people expected and that this is an issue that many, many people and companies are concerned about. As such, it seems quite likely that there will be investment and entrepreneurship focused on these areas over the next few years -- and I fully expect that a number of more secure and private solutions, who actively promote themselves on these features, will hit the market.