Software in the Cloud

There is a global trend towards outsourcing computing services to third party providers via the World Wide Web. Since such “Cloud Services” can be more cost-effective than hosting those on-premises, it can be in CERN’s interest to use them. However, certain aspects of the Cloud Services' “Acceptable Use Policy” related to privacy, data protection & ownership, security need to be carefully assessed and data locality must comply with CERN’s privileges and immunities.

The Cloud Licence Office (CLO) has been established to provide guidance on the purchase and use of cloud services by members of CERN’s personnel, evaluate whether adverse conditions exist and whether the overall risks are acceptable to the Organization, and to authorize any site-wide purchase & usage of Cloud Services.

The CLO works in close contact and in cooperation with the Procurement and Industrial Services group (IPT-PI), the IT Consulting Team and the Software Licence Office (SLO). If needed it liaises with the Computer Security Officer (CSO), the Office of Data Privacy Protection (ODPP) and with the Legal Service.

The CLO operates on the basis of a Policy for Cloud Usage. As per this policy, each of the two categories below is linked with specific obligations:

  • Entreprise Clouds: Require a contract with CERN following previous consultation and approval by the CLO. For this case, please collect the information and documents described in Questions to Enterprise Cloud providers before contacting the CLO.
  • Public Clouds: They can be used by individuals without conclusion of a contract with the service provider if the following criteria are met: no CERN legally protected data involved, confidential data restrictions strictly adhered to with appropriate access controls, and possibility to transfer all CERN data onsite or to another account when required. The usage of public clouds is allowed provided the service is registered in the list of certified public clouds maintained by the CLO. To be added to such list a public cloud must have satisfactorily completed the CERN Self-assessment of Public Clouds.

Cloud License Officer:

Ignacio Reguero


Miroslav Potocky


The Cloud License Office is reachable via or “

Cloud Licence Office Web Site: