The cloud

amazon businesses cia

Amazon says it wants to be "Earth's most customer-centric company." But that goal doesn't just apply to consumers at home with their laptops. The company also provides a robust suite of cloud-related services to business customers, allowing them to offload time-consuming tasks like setting up servers and managing databases as well as providing data storage and computational power.

Amazon originally set up its server infrastructure to ensure that its own site would remain online during busy periods like the Christmas season, before realizing it could also rent it out to others when the servers were idle. Customers of Amazon Web Services include Netflix (NFLX), Pintrest and even the CIA.

First published April 14, 2014: 7:26 AM ET

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