Open Telekom Cloud for Business Customers

Public cloud for public corporation

Modern administration thanks to digitalization.
The Munich Chamber of Commerce has been relying on the Open Telekom Cloud since 2020.

In this article you will read about,

  • why the Chamber of Industry and Commerce for Munich and Upper Bavaria relies on public cloud resources,
  • how the Open Telekom Cloud convinced when it came to data protection, IT security, and the obligation to professional secrecy,
  • and how the Chamber of Industry and Commerce for Munich and Upper Bavaria can accelerate its processes and meet the requirements of the Online Access Act on time thanks to automation and digitalization.

Advice on setting up a business and information for the self-employed, topics relating to vocational training and registering a trade, or representing the interests of regional businesses vis-à-vis politicians: The 79 Chambers of Industry and Commerce (IHKs) in Germany, organized in the umbrella organization, the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), are responsible for all this and more. The Chambers of Industry and Commerce are increasingly making their services, information materials, and forms available on the Internet. By the end of 2022, most services must be available online. This is because, as public corporations, they are subject to the so-called Online Access Act (OZG). This stipulates that all German public administration services must be available online by the end of 2022. This also applies to the Chamber of Industry and Commerce for Munich and Upper Bavaria, the largest chamber in Germany.

In the past, the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce used the managed services of a hosting provider and its own hardware for its IT services such as database systems, the entire workplace infrastructure, and even the content management system. "In 2019, we were faced with the question of whether to invest extensively in new hardware for future requirements or to rely on a cloud solution," says Roberto Schumann, Head of IT Services at the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce. The IT expert and his team opted for the cloud. "We no longer want to deal with hardware procurement and support or the amount of resources required, but instead implement new solutions quickly and flexibly. The cloud is also significantly more cost-effective because we pay for what we actually use."

Decisive selection criteria: IT security and data protection

Following a tender process and a successful proof of concept, the Munich chamber opted for the Open Telekom Cloud. Decisive factors included the high level of IT security and reliability across several availability zones, as well as GDPR-compliant data protection. Another important factor was that it was a solution from a German provider from German data centers that is not subject to the Cloud Act like American hyperscalers, who thus may have to grant authorities access to the stored data. "As an established market player, Telekom also offers us convincing stability," says Schumann.

The Open Telekom Cloud was the only provider with data centers in Germany that could offer us the exact modern technologies we want to use.

– Roberto Schumann, Head of IT Services at the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce

Another aspect that was particularly important to the IT manager: As a public corporation, the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce works with sensitive information – for example, on topics related to trade law. The chamber is legally obliged to provide special data protection. This means, among other things: All employees of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce who come into contact with it are bound by professional secrecy. "This goes beyond the basic data protection regulations and the GDPR. And we attach great importance to the fact that this also applies to the employees at our cloud service provider," says Schumann. This is where the Open Telekom Cloud scored with its explicit obligations for professional secrecy holders.

Anti-DDoS, the Telekom firewall, and additional security systems to protect data and applications in the cloud met the overarching requirements of the German Chambers of Industry and Commerce, which are networked via Germany's largest WAN network. At the same time, they convinced the IT experts from Munich: "We could not cost-effectively operate such comprehensive protection in our own data center."

Automation increases speed and independence 

In terms of the speed with which it can develop and deploy applications, the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce has made significant gains with the Open Telekom Cloud. "We don't have to buy new hardware when we need more server capacity, but can book it quickly and flexibly. This means we can also implement ad-hoc projects where hardware limitations slowed us down in the past."

Another aspect that was crucial for the Bavarians was the need for a high level of automation, which among other things enables additional services to be introduced with the existing team and managed in day-to-day business. With standard scripting tools such as Terraform and Ansible, the Open Telekom Cloud offers important prerequisites for quickly setting up IT systems and applications and automatically distributing the software. "It can be up and running on another machine within 10 minutes." To deploy and manage Docker containers, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce relies on the open-source Kubernetes system.

Both the standard script technologies and the open-source basis of the Open Telekom Cloud ensure that the Chamber of Industry and Commerce is independent: They prevent so-called vendor lock-in, as the institution can switch to another cloud provider with its applications and systems at any time. In the meantime, Schumann and his team are relying on a cloud-first strategy for all new applications. In addition to the capacities from the public cloud, the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce also continues to use private resources. Here, its own systems for workplace management run in the data center of a Telekom partner.

Titelbild Referenzflyer IHK München

The Chamber of Industry and Commerce and Open Telekom Cloud

Learn how the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce benefits from more security than in its own data center thanks to the Open Telekom Cloud.


Modern IT infrastructure facilitates exchange with companies

Following the switch to the Open Telekom Cloud in 2020, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce's service portal, among others, now runs via the booked infrastructures and platform services. Users can access the online services of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce here. These rely on databases or even backup and storage services from the Open Telekom Cloud. Thanks to technologies such as blockchain, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce now even offers its customers security-sensitive services such as applying for copies of certificates online. This reduces the workload for employees, as they no longer have to process mail or analog processes.

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