is a subscription-based service where you can obtain networked storage space and computer resources.Cloud computing is similar to the experience with any email service.The service provider, be it Yahoo!, Gmail, Hotmail, and so on, takes care of housing all of the hardware and software necessary to support your personal email account. To access your email, you open your web browser and go to the site to log in.
The cloud makes it possible to access your information from anywhere at any time. While a traditional computer setup requires you to be in the same location as your data storage device, the cloud takes away that step.The cloud service provider can both own and house the hardware and software necessary to run your home or business applications.This is especially helpful for businesses that cannot afford the same amount of hardware and storage space as a bigger company.
Small companies can store their information in the cloud,removing the cost of purchasing and storing memory devices. Additionally, because you only need to buy the amount of storage space you will use, a business can purchase more space or reduce their subscription as their business grows or as they find they need less storage space.
One requirement is that you need to have an internet connection in order to access the cloud.
This means that if you want to look at a specific document you have housed in the cloud, you must first establish an internet connection either through a wireless or wired internet or a mobile broadband connection. The benefit is that you can access that same document from wherever you are with any device that can access the internet. These devices could be a desktop, laptop, tablet, or phone. This can also help your business to function more smoothly because anyone who can connect to the internet and your cloud can work on documents, access software, and store data. Imagine picking up your smartphone and downloading a .pdf document to review instead of having to stop by the office to print it or upload it to your laptop. This is the freedom that the cloud can provide for you or your organization.
Different types of clouds are available depending on your needs. As a
home user or small business owner, you will most likely use public cloud services.
Public Cloud can be accessed by any subscriber with an internet connection and access to the cloud space.
Private Cloud is established for a specific group or organization and restricts access to just that group.
Community Cloud -is shared among two or more organizations that have similar cloud requirements.
Hybrid Cloud - is essentially a combination of at least two clouds, where the clouds included are a mixture of public, private, or community.
However, with this increased ease of cloud services also come drawbacks.
1)You have less control over who has access to your information and little to no knowledge of where it is stored.
2)You also must be aware of the security risks of having data stored on the cloud. The cloud is a big target for malicious individuals and may have disadvantages because it can be accessed through an unsecured
(Sourced from :www.us-cert.gov)