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Essentially an internet communications network (either a Wide Area Network [WAN] or a private network) in which a data-centre performs a range of services such as data storage (cloud storage) or remote apps and programs (cloud computing). The term comes from the way network engineers used to draw system diagrams with a cloud symbol to simplify a very complex (and irrelevant) network of routers, switches, drives and cables into something that just showed the relevant external connection points.