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Cloud Security is the collection of tools and processes used to protect data, applications and services hosted in a cloud environment. It covers the technical end of threat prevention, including things like encryption, which scrambles data so that it can only be read by someone with a key, and cloud visibility, which ensures the right people are seeing the right information.

Physical infrastructure security is also important in a cloud context, as servers and other IT hardware must be protected against theft, fires and power failures. This normally takes the form of professionally specified, designed and constructed data centers with adequate redundancies to minimize disruption.

When it comes to the application layer, identity and access management (IAM) is a critical element of cloud security. Using strong authentication methods, like 2FA or MFA, helps to reduce the risk of malicious attacks that try to gain unauthorized access to applications. Encryption is an essential part of any cloud security strategy, ensuring data cannot be stolen from the platform even if it is lost or intercepted on the way to another destination.

While the largest enterprises can insist on having their own private cloud, most businesses and individuals use a public cloud model. This means sharing space with hundreds or even thousands of other tenants. This model means that a breach of one company could affect many others and is an attractive target for hackers, who are often looking to make money or progress in their careers with stolen data.