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When it comes to the enterprise, a majority of organizations engage in international business. Companies who expand their global footprint have to factor in the international impact on production, sales, marketing, and a number of other mission critical departments. The common thread amongst all of these functions is the data they create.

Whether a U.S.-based ad agency has clients across multiple continents or a UK-based construction firm is working on a U.S.-based project, data is being exchanged worldwide. We established a European data center in Amsterdam back in 2010, knowing how important it would be to address the specific needs of our international customers.

While this wasn’t necessarily the easiest of decisions —due to cost and logistics —we knew it would be the right one, long-term. Here are a few reasons why:

1) Performance – With a hybrid solution that involved both cloud and on-premises deployments we wanted to make sure customers were always going to be as close as possible to their data. By building out a data center in Europe, we were able to provide a superior experience for our customers that far surpassed cloud-only competitors that only had data centers in the U.S..

2) Security/Privacy – While the U.S. government has its own policies on privacy (c.f. Edward Snowden), the EU data privacy and security laws have been significantly more robust, as far back as 1998. We made a conscious decision to follow the stringent levels of data privacy and security with our own European data center. Egnyte customer data is not accessed unless explicit permission is granted and European customer data does not leave the EU. This is true even when a support ticket is opened.

3) Future Expansion – As our business grew, so did our customers. As I briefly touched on before, the majority of our enterprise customers were conducting international business, so it made perfect sense for us to accommodate them. In Silicon Valley, SaaS company growth numbers would tell you that 20-25% of revenue would eventually come from Europe. In order to scale we needed to commit and ensure our customers that we would support their growth by building a European data center.

There has been a lot of noise around the recent US-EU Safe Harbor agreement being deemed invalid, which organizations are very concerned about. Safe Harbor has allowed U.S. companies to easily conduct business in Europe, Egnyte has never been satisfied with the bare minimum just to meet mandated compliances. Just as technology constantly evolves, so do the laws.

Regardless of this Safe Harbor ruling, Egnyte is constantly investigating options for our customers to keep their data as safe and secure as possible. With our European data center in place since 2010, we are confident in our ability to provide a safe environment for not only our customers and their data, but our own data as well.