Switzerland national weather service moves data to the cloud

MeteoSwiss, the national weather service of Switzerland, has moved its meteorological and climatological data to the cloud after signing a deal with Amazon Web Services (AWS).

As reported by NZZ am Sonntag, the weather service is the first federal agency to make the move after the Swiss Government signed a CHF110 million ($123m) deal with five cloud service providers in September 2022: Alibaba, AWS, IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle.

MeteoSwiss is now storing its data on AWS, with a spokeswoman for the agency saying that they chose the service for improved reliability and ‘significantly increased data volumes.’

Two other federal bodies are reportedly in the process of outsourcing data to the cloud, and half a dozen others are exploring the possibility.

The Swiss government’s decision to outsource some of its workloads to the cloud was first announced in 2021. Some security fears were generated by the choice to include a Chinese provider, which was shared by the Swiss Data Protection Commissioner, Adrian Lobsinger.

The government stated that the clouds would be used for the storage of public information ‘not in need of particular protection,’ while any internal data will have to be hosted on a server physically located in Switzerland.

The deal between the Swiss government and various cloud providers was contended by Google after the company missed out. The company appealed against the Swiss Government, saying that it was convinced that its cloud services met the requirements, and it was the best equipped to get the job. The appeal was dropped just a few months later.

Google and Microsoft both launched cloud regions in Switzerland in 2019, with Microsoft later adding availability zones in Zurich in 2022. AWS launched its Zurich cloud region in November of 2022 after first announcing plans in 2020.

Source: datacenterdynamics.com