Box Pitches New Multi-Zone Feature to Help With GDPR Compliance

Multizone support will allow Box users to address data residency and compliance requirements to meet GDPR and other regulatory obligations.

Christine Hall

May 29, 2018

2 Min Read
Box, GDPR, Box Zones, Multizones

Box, the cloud-based content management and file sharing service for businesses, now offers multizone support for its Box Zones. First introduced in 2016, Box Zones are comparable to the availability zones offered by public clouds like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure and allow customers to choose one of seven geographic regions where their data will be stored.

The new offering is designed to address concerns Box's customers might have about GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), the EU's new data privacy regulations that went into effect Friday, and carry Box Zones' capabilities a step further. Users now have the ability to store data in and collaborate seamlessly across any of Box’s existing Zones from a single Box instance.

Customers can assign storage Zones for individual users while designating a default Zone for the entire organization, helping them address data residency and compliance requirements. This helps not only for GDPR compliance, but for meeting other government regulations as well.

"While the GDPR doesn't explicitly require data residency, many of the organizations we work with want to be able to store their data in specific regions in order to demonstrate effective risk mitigation and proactive regulatory compliance in an ever-changing compliance environment," Jeetu Patel, Box's chief product officer, explained in a blog. "At the same time, business has never been more fast-paced, and regulatory changes like the GDPR and the ever-changing security landscape are making it increasingly difficult to create a digital workplace that provides employees with the information they need to be successful."

Related:What Europe’s New Data Protection Law Means for Data Center Operators

Multizone support isn't the first move that Box has made to help customers comply with the new regulations. In February, the company introduced a "self-serve" Data Processing Addendum, a document that once electronically signed can be presented to auditors to demonstrate that their use of Box meets their GDPR compliance obligation.

With the new multizone support feature, customers can change a user's assigned zone at any time, and content will automatically migrate with no loss of access. In addition, administrators can manage all of an enterprise's data from a single admin console, regardless of how many zones the organization is using.

The feature also includes real-time, self-serve reporting, with the ability to download reports on individual users and their assigned zones from the admin console for auditing. As in the past, users will be able to collaborate with colleagues, partners and suppliers without having to worry about where their data is stored.

Related:10 Things Data Center Operators Can Do to Prepare for GDPR

"Multizone support for Box Zones is the most recent offering in Box’s robust stable of enterprise-grade security and compliance capabilities," Patel said. "This new offering ensures that global organizations, including those in the most highly regulated industries, are able to securely store, manage and collaborate on content in Box, while maintaining adherence to the most stringent compliance and regulatory requirements."

Box's business plans start at $5 monthly per user, with a 14-day free trial available.

About the Author(s)

Christine Hall

Freelance author

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001 she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and began covering IT full time in 2002, focusing on Linux and open source software. Since 2010 she's published and edited the website FOSS Force. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux.

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