I’m not sure when it happened, but at some point throughout the madness of tech and innovation the single mom became better at managing data than the small business (and possibly even the big ones, too).

I’m not saying that personal households got smart and savvy without the IT community keeping pace, I’m saying that the innovators who create the technology that manages our digital lives learned about “early adopters” — the people who are first to try something new in the tech world — businesses aren’t keen on adopting anything early when it comes to the security of their web data.

But now it’s 2013 and small businesses, especially in design and programming, are learning to go digital. Some of it was by choice, some wasn’t. Here are four ways the cloud is saving the way we do business on the web.

Local Servers Get Destroyed

When Hurricane Sandy hit New York City last year, it destroyed local data servers and took entire web sites offline for weeks. A Computer World report describes the damage done as a digital casualty, since most of this country’s data passes through a New York data center at some point.

The hurricane was a wakeup call for those who do business on the web — your data is vulnerable. Cloud computing, which is always under scrutiny for reliability, appeared much more reliable after that storm.

It’s Gotten Way, Way Safer

The biggest concern of cloud computing isn’t just reliability, but also privacy. Essentially, you’re trusting your information to an off-site, third-party company and hope it stays safe. It was much easier when all we had to worry about was shoulder surfing and loosing track of our password, but the truth is the security of cloud computing has moved mountains to prevent data from leaking out.

As the industry of cloud computing grows, so do the standards of security. The companies that safeguard your data have a larger obligation to implement standards that prevent hackers from accessing information they shouldn’t. The stats were verified and compiled in a report by The Guardian researchers.

It Grows Careers

It’s not just about what others are doing for your data management, but what you could possibly be doing with theirs. As cloud computing grows, designers and programmers are in growing demand. Computer World lays out 10 careers that, before cloud computing came along, just didn’t exist. That’s good for the quality of the industry and the career path of any young designer or programmer.

It’s Just Easier Staying Local

And cheaper. Imagine the costs of the equipment and staff needed to maintain all your data under one roof, especially if you’re a larger company. Some of those employees will still be needed to manage data on a cloud server, but the bulk of the burden is taken off your shoulders.

What the household started is slowly making its way into the IT department, but that pace is picking up. According to Compass Intelligence, small businesses in America will spend $16 billion on cloud computing this year.