Cloud providers should make a number of promises to customers and stick to them, according to a new report from Gartner.
The analyst firm said that cloud services customers have a number of basic rights that protect their interests and ensure that they get the best possible service, but that the market is full of miscommunication.
Daryl Plummer, managing vice president of Gartner's Global IT Council for Cloud Services, said that adhering to the principles will help both parties "establish and maintain successful business relationships".
The Council comprises chief information officers at large firms, all of which are cloud users, and a selection of Gartner analysts.
"If cloud services are commoditised, providers should offer stronger customer guarantees. However, service providers either do not offer protections or vary greatly in the protections they do offer," said Plummer.
"We believe that the Council can facilitate improvements in industry practices that will benefit not only IT customers and clients, but developers, vendors and other stakeholders."
The Council is looking at all issues associated with the cloud, and will address the most pressing IT considerations.
Gartner's recommendations include "the right to retain ownership", which argues that service consumers should retain ownership of their data and be offered guarantees of its security.
The analyst firm advised IT bosses to ensure that this control over the right to own data is built into any agreements at the start of discussions.
This also extends to service level agreements, which Gartner said should include slowdowns and failures, and should be customised to the individual requirements of the customer, something that apparently does not happen as stand ard.
"These rights and responsibilities will benefit service providers and service consumers," said Plummer.
"Respecting these rights will require effort and expense from providers, but securing the rights will encourage organisations to put more of their business into the cloud."
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