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Definition: service bureau

An organization that provides data processing services. The term was widely used prior to cloud computing, although many service bureaus still exist to provide functions such as data entry, data conversion and batch processing. Service organizations also support imagesetting, color proofing, slide creation and other related publishing services on an hourly or per job basis. Connections are typically via the Internet, although dial-up and private lines were commonly used in the past. See cloud computing and XaaS.