Governments and public sector organizations recognize the increasing need to protect their data. With the increase of cyber-attacks globally and growing demands from their citizens to protect their information, public sector organizations are more frequently moving away from cloud-based software toward on-premise solutions.
Companies worldwide want to maintain their business reputation by complying with the region- and industry-specific privacy regulations. Governmental organizations operate under even more scrutiny regarding privacy regulations since their actions are held as the norm in that department. Moreover, citizens across the globe are demanding better services, and public sector organizations want to justify and increase citizens’ trust.
That’s why it’s no surprise that privacy-minded organizations - including public sector ones - increasingly choose on-premise software. Read on to discover why governmental organizations are looking for more security and the exact benefits of on-premise solutions.
The rising need for on-prem solutions in governmental organizations
Organizations across the world are looking to increase their data privacy standards. Public sector and governmental organizations are perceived as leaders in compliance with their own (governments’) regulations, such as GDPR or HIPAA.
In the EU member states, the call for increased transparency on data processing and storage is well underway. Public sector organizations are taking the lead themselves. There have been several cases of governmental organizations switching from well-known software due to privacy concerns:
- Germany’s Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information has deemed it illegal for schools to use cloud-based software from Microsoft, Google, and Apple. According to the official statement,
the Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud platform’s standard settings expose personal information about school pupils and teachers to possible access by US officials, and are thus incompatible with European and local data protection laws.
The data exposure refers to the US Cloud Act, enacted in 2018, which authorizes US government agencies to request access to customer data from all US-based companies, irrespective of their servers’ location.
- Due to the same data privacy concerns and the possibility of sharing data with the US government, the French government banned Microsoft 365 products from internal use.
Moreover, when MS Teams was announced as a replacement for Skype for Business after its retirement, many privacy-conscious organizations went on a hunt for Skype for Business alternatives. The main reason for not being keen on MS Teams as a replacement was the inability to host it on-premise (as this was a possibility with Skype for Business).
Research from Red Hat shows that out of non-SaaS apps, 37% are run on-premise only, while 40% are run hybridly (a combination of on-premise and cloud). This speaks to the popularity of on-premise solutions for highly regulated industries such as the government and public sector.
On-premise hosting trend: how it’s beneficial for the government sector
Governmental organizations’ software requirements can be summarized in three pillars: data privacy, data security, and data sovereignty. In other words, public sector organizations want their data kept private and secure, and the best way to do it is to have it fully under control.
Here are all the benefits of on-premise hosting for government-related organizations.
Long-term cost reduction
When organizations acquire on-prem software, they only pay for the licenses they need. With their in-house experts, it’s much easier to reduce costs long term. Vendor lock-in is unlikely to occur with on-premise solutions.
Increased data security
Government-related organizations hold, exchange, and process extra-sensitive information. That’s why more and more of them are opting for on-premise solutions that ensure the highest levels of security and data privacy.
Staying in control of your data
Together with security and privacy, data sovereignty is something that public sector organizations look for. On-premise solutions give them a high level of control over their data simply because it never leaves their premises.
From examples of German schools and French ministries mentioned above, we’ve seen how lack of control over data can turn into a problem of potential data misuse.
Adapting to legacy technologies
Unfortunately, digital transformation is progressing at a slower pace for public sector organizations. The reasons are multiple: less in-house knowledge, fewer resources, and overall slowness in adapting to changes in the commercial sector.
Legacy systems and processes limit most governmental agencies, and shifting to cloud solutions may prove challenging due to incompatibility gaps. On the other hand, on-prem solutions are often built around the existing infrastructure to suit the unique operating environments of public sector agencies.
On-premise and open source: the ideal secure software combination
On-premise solutions are beneficial for public sector organizations since they can be built around existing infrastructure that usually includes legacy software. What gives governmental agencies even more flexibility to adapt to their complex infrastructure is open source software.
Open source software has its own benefits for the governmental sector, but it essentially satisfies the main criteria of increased security. The added benefit is the flexibility to intervene in the code itself and adapt it to the agency's needs.
To maximize data security, privacy-conscious organizations worldwide are increasingly adopting open source software that can be deployed on-premise. Combining these features ensures flexibility and security, thus reducing long-term costs and driving the digital transformation in public sector organizations.
Rocket.Chat’s on-premise open source software for maximum security
Rocket.Chat is an open source communication platform that enables teams in privacy-conscious organizations to work together efficiently. Since it can be deployed on-premise, it satisfies the highest security requirements, making it an ideal choice for government-related agencies and public sector organizations.
Due to its versatile nature, Rocket.Chat can be used as a tool for team and inter-departmental collaboration, as well as a solution to connect with citizens on their favorite channels.
Read more about Rocket.Chat’s offer for governmental organizations and get in touch with our sales team to get your questions answered today.