The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released a public request for information on the business practices of cloud computing providers to determine their impact on competition and whether they pose security risks.

CTO Stephanie Nguyen stated the FTC aimed to broaden its understanding of the potential impact of a reliance on cloud computing services by large parts of the US economy.

The FTC is seeking information on whether some sectors of the economy are overly-reliant on a limited number of cloud providers along with the impact on industries including healthcare, finance, transportation, e-commerce and defence.

It is also seeking information about the ability of cloud customers to negotiate flexible contracts and incentives providers offer.

There are also questions over the products and services offered using AI, and the degree to which these are “proprietary or provider agnostic”.

The public has until 22 May to submit comments.

Synergy Research Group data showed AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud accounted for 66 per cent of the global cloud market in Q4 2022, compared with 63 per cent in the same period of 2021.

Other regulators are also concerned over the trio’s perceived market dominance: in 2022, Ofcom opened a probe into their respective cloud services in the UK.