Utilization of cloud-based processes

Utilization of cloud-based processes is all the rage in today’s computing market. The cloud has long been a buzzword in the industry, and a popular topic of discussion amongst computing specialists. But, what is the cloud, beyond a fancy word thrown around in commercials?
Is cloud a new idea or an old idea?
Given some of the more famous vulnerabilities in networks and corporate computing systems, what are some of the things that make information on the cloud vulnerable?
What are some of the risks and drawbacks to using the cloud?

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