The FBI has entered the hunt for the hacker who stole dozens of private celebrity photos. The nude images may have been stored in the "cloud."
It's safe to say that many don't really understand cloud computing. The new Cameron Diaz film "Sex Tape" is based around the idea that nobody gets how it works.
But it's actually fairly simple.
The cloud is really just another word for servers on the Internet. Using the cloud means you're outsourcing tasks to those servers that might otherwise be performed by your local device. The most common one is to use the cloud for storage; so, instead of storing data on your computer, data is stored on remote servers that you access via the Internet.
Think of it like putting your money in a bank. You're putting your property in a dedicated storage space. Using a bank means you don't have to keep all your money in a piggy bank at home, while using the cloud means you don't have to have every photo you've ever taken taking up valuable space on your iPad. And when you do want to see your photos, storing them on the cloud allows you to access it on any device - similar to how banks allow you to withdraw money from any ATM.
And it's a safe bet that you're already using cloud services. If you've ever used Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo! Mail or any web mail service, then you've been storing your email in the cloud.