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Kalush: 'regulation is lagging cloud developments'

Kalush: ‘regulation is lagging cloud developments’

Online social investment network eToro has moved its core IT infrastructure onto a hybrid cloud system. The platform will allow it to maintain sensitive applications in a private cloud while using a public cloud for others.

The eToro investment community uses social-media techniques and quote-trading to allow users to manage their portfolios and invest in currencies, commodities, indices and stocks, following other investors to determine successful trading strategies.

It is moving applications, including those supporting its Social Trading service, to the Microsoft Azure public cloud platform, hosted by TelecityGroup. At the same time, the private infrastructure running its core trading functions has been relocated into Telecity’s London datacentre. Using Azure ExpressRoute, available as part of Telecity’s Cloud-IX ecosystem, eToro has a direct connection between its private and public infrastructure, enabling it to bypass the public internet with reduced network costs and greater bandwidth.

“Cloud is the obvious path,” said Israel Kalush, vice president of engineering at eToro. “We are dealing with some quite sophisticated trading strategies, including high speed trading. Data needs to be available 24/7. The nature of our business requires us to provide a scalable service.”

Kalush said that parts of the company’s legacy systems would endure for “a long time to come”, and that  the migration is linked to a strict policy of data segregation.

“Each service has its own segregated data,” he said. “The trading data stays on premise. The social data goes onto the cloud. We had to consider the costs and the benefits, and we felt this was the best balance between the two. We also have our own monitoring tools.”

Kalush said regulation on the use of public and private cloud in financial services can sometimes be a grey area – a factor he puts down to the relatively recent appearance of the technology in the mainstream business community.

“We work in a regulated industry, which obliges strict guarantees to the customer and how their data is used,” he said. “That said, regulation hasn’t necessarily fully adjusted to the explosion of cloud in the last decade. We have not put core financial tools into the cloud partly for that reason. But there are many areas of business where it is a natural decision.”

eToro is part of the Anthemis group of companies. It currently has some four million users in 170 countries.

This article was originally published on Banking Technology.

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