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Cloud computing is a flexible, cost-effective, and proven delivery platform for providing business or consumer IT services over the Internet. Cloud resources can be rapidly deployed and easily scaled, with all processes, applications, and services provisioned "on demand", regardless of user location or device. As a result, cloud computing gives organizations the opportunity to increase their service delivery efficiencies, streamline IT management, and better align IT services with dynamic business requirements. In many ways, cloud computing offers the "best of both worlds", providing solid support for core business functions along with the capacity to develop new and innovative services.
In addition to the usual challenges of developing secure IT systems, cloud computing presents an added level of risk, because essential services are often outsourced to a third party. The "externalized" aspect of outsourcing makes it harder to maintain data integrity and privacy, support data and service availability, and demonstrate compliance.
The security measures discussed in this IBM Redpapers? publication represent best practice implementations for cloud security.
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