The European Banking Authority (EBA) on Thursday launched a consultation on proposed new guidance for financial firms that are adopting cloud computing services.

The proposals seek to clarify regulators’ expectations for financial firms that use cloud computing. The guidance aims to allow firms to take advantage of the benefits of using cloud services, while also ensuring that any risks are identified and managed.

The EBA has decided to develop the guidance amid the opportunities for innovation that are emerging due to the advent of cloud computing, and the increasing demand for cloud services among financial firms, it says in a statement.

The new guidance builds on existing regulatory guidelines on outsourcing generally.

The consultation includes recommendations in several areas, including data security, the location of data and data processing, access and audit rights, chain outsourcing, and contingency plans and exit strategies.

The initial recommendations are focused on banks, investment firms and regulators. In follow-up work, the EBA says it will explore extending the guidance to other types of regulated firms.

The consultation runs until August 18.