Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is another way of saying that the internet, instead of a computer, is being used to share and store data. If your device has access to the internet, then you can use cloud-based apps to create and share files. 

In this article I share loads of tips and links to information that will help you get the most out of the cloud. Whether you need solutions for home or business, I also share how you can keep your information safe in the cloud.

Let’s get started!

Who uses cloud computing?

Spoiler alert: you do!

Anyone who uses their computer or smartphone on a daily basis is probably using some form of cloud computing. Everyday apps like Gmail, Facebook, Dropbox, and WordPress are all cloud-based. If you’ve ever gone looking for a photo on your phone that you took using the Facebook Messenger app and couldn’t find it, it’s because the photo is stored in the cloud. The same is true for photos taken in most other social media platforms. Luckily, there is a download feature on most apps that allows you to save the photo to your device for later. 

Here are some of the most common uses for cloud computing, both at home and in the office:

At home

  • Data storage – apps like G Suite and iCloud are free and come with basic storage that can be upgraded for a fee. Apple devices all come with iCloud, and it is accessible as soon as you create your Apple ID. The G Suite app needs to be downloaded, and it can be used on both Android and Apple. 
  • Remote access – apps like MobiLockPro (for Android) and Apple Remote Desktop provide the ability to view, access, and control another device. Smart homes (homes that us automation for heating, lights and sound, etc.) and Apple TV are two of the main reasons to use remote access in your home. 
  • File sharing – apps like DropBox and Google Drive are the best way to share large files (like batch photos of family vacations) that can’t be sent via email.

Small Business

  • IT Management & Support: Manage and maintain IT software, and backup & recovery. Cloud solutions for these applications need to be carefully researched to make sure they dovetail with all of your other systems. Give me a call or send me an email if I can help you find the right solution for your small business.
  • Sales & Marketing: Deployment tool for software or services (a free blog or a shopping cart), to data mine your customers buying patterns in order to target your advertising, and for web development (see my article on Getting To Know WordPress).
  • Project Management: Cloud-based telecommunications (Slack) and project management solutions (Asana)

Keeping your information safe in the cloud

Like anything that lives on the internet, the cloud is not immune to cyber attacks. Hackers can find their way in through phishing (programs you accidentally download), malware, and software exploitation. The best way to protect against these threats is to:

  1. Know how to recognize a phishing scam
  2. Keep your software updates up-to-date, and
  3. Create strong passwords 

If you are a small business owner that uses the cloud, you can find tips for keeping your information safe in Cloud Security: What You Need To Know.

How can I help you get the most out of cloud computing?

Cloud computing makes file sharing and collaboration simple and easy, whether it’s for home or small business. If you want an IT professional to perform the installation, give me a call. I’ll help get you sorted! And I can help you find the right app for your needs.

Good luck – and have fun!