Canada Tries to Balance Privacy and Growth
Canada is fast becoming the data center location of choice for companies that are tired of the high costs of power and low quality of security in the United States. Even some potentially higher prices in Canada cannot keep US companies away because of the increased privacy protections that Canada offers.
Has the NSA Gone Too Far?
One of the main reasons that US companies are moving north is a deep concern about government surveillance and the huge loopholes in US privacy laws, basically giving the government a backdoor to demand or take any data that it wants. Even Microsoft Azure has followed the trend and put a new data center in Canada recently.
Canadians May Not Like This Migration.
Although tourism from the US to Canada has never been a problem, this new data migration brings about new concerns that Canadians are much more wary of. Data center expert Bryan Loewen has found that Canadians, much like Americans, are concerned about the privacy of their data. Most Canadian companies are much more nationalistic about keeping data local and minimizing the intermingling of foreign companies with local servers.
However, the US is not doing much to keep its data distribution business local. The US government has breached (by force) many cloud service providers, forcing those data companies to comply with shifty regulations. Many data centers in Canada find this rift in trust between the US government and its companies too sweet to pass up.
Half of Canadian Data is American.
A full 50 percent of the data in Canada is data from American companies according to recent reports. This obviously outpaces even Canadian data, which stands at only 40 percent.
Another huge plus is the fact that Canada runs almost completely on renewable energy. This lowers the cost of power exponentially, with energy costing only about five cents per KW/hr in the country.
Additionally, many savvy customers are looking for companies with a data center outside of the United States for the same reasons of privacy. Although the US still leads in data overall, it definitely has some catching up to do.