The cloud’ is just a short name for ‘cloud
computing’ which is a term referring to the idea of using someone else’s computers over
the internet for things like storing data and running programs rather than saving them
locally on your PC or laptop
Unlike their physical counterparts, cloud-based servers have low, or even zero, up-front
costs. They can expand (or contract) to meet the unique demands of your business, you and your colleagues can access them anywhere, they require lower maintenance, and there’s no hardware to refresh every 5 years allowing you to invest in other areas of your business.
Cloud applications usually run on a network of powerful internet-connected computers spread across the globe. All you really need to know, is that all you need in order to access the cloud is an internet-connected device.
It’s likely that you’re already using cloud-based applications on a daily basis without even realising it. BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Microsoft Office, or storage applications such as Dropbox are all cloud-based applications which don’t rely on lots of local space for storage.
Running desktop versions of multiple programs requires more space and power, creating the need for a higher spec device in order to run everything you need whilst simultaneously maintaining performance levels. By using cloud versions of things like Microsoft Office, accounting software or any of the Adobe Creative Suite programs, your device doesn’t need to be as high spec as it would running them all locally.
With so many options when it comes to data storage, we know it can become overwhelming when you're looking to decide which option might be best for your business, but more and more businesses are utilising cloud technology, for very good reason.
Not having to pay for hardware and the setup of hardware means low or zero upfront costs when it comes to cloud computing
Cloud applications can elastically expand or reduce completely in line with your business requirements. This means delivering exactly the right amount of resources - storage, bandwidth, or computing power, exactly when it’s needed
Using the cloud means that you’re not reliant on local power or connectivity. Major internet problem in the office? Relocate anywhere else with an internet connection and you can log in and carry on working without issue.
The IT industry generally recommends replacing hardware at least every 5 years. If you use cloud services for things like backup and disaster recovery, you don’t need to worry about updating those, your provider will keep you automatically up-to-date.
The security measures in place at data centres will be far greater than those of a private server. Just because it’s local, doesn’t mean that it’s safe.
A recent poll stated that 86% of companies globally use multiple cloud storage system, and this number continues to rise. This shows that the vast majority of companies trust cloud storage in a way that’s meaningful to their business.
The front line of defence for any cloud system is encryption. This essentially means that data is scrambled using complex algorithms, and if it were to be stolen (highly unlikely, given the physical security measures usually employed at data
Although you might be limited to cloud providers whose practices comply with EU GDPR legislation, you’re still spoilt for choice in terms of providers. This means you can ask questions, research any past data breaches, and choose the right provider who holds the security of your data to the highest importance.