Technologies that could change the world have been a popular topic for the past half century. True, the predictions that everyone would drive flying cars have not materialized, but what has materialized would astound those who offered such predictions 50 years ago. And where emerging technologies are headed is even more stunning. Seven technologies, in my opinion, are poised for explosive growth in 2018. And what they can accomplish this year and beyond is not even the most significant disruption that I see them causing.
Digitization will continue to grow in the maritime industry and, with it, the threat of cyberattacks. The industry’s historic willingness to accept the risks that the open seas offer and meet them head-on when they occur should not also be its approach to cybersecurity. The stakes are high, with attackers employing increasingly ingenious strategies to achieve massive paydays from the vessels – and their companies – that leave unneeded vulnerabilities open to them. And not only are massive amounts of money at state, but also people’s lives and well-being. As digitization of the maritime industry grows, attention to cybersecurity must grow with it.
The inherent threat the evolution of our living places - Our species has moved out of the trees onto the savanna – just to build concrete trees instead, in the form of cities. Although this may be a nutshell view of human history, the movement towards making our living places habitable is taking a new turn. We no longer live just in the physical world, we now live also in the cyber-physical, and this transforms how we live, work, and play in the form of the ‘smart city’ built on our own data.
As physical objects and processes are increasingly being monitored or controlled by connected computational devices such as Industrial Control Systems (ICS) or Internet of Things (IoT), those physical objects and processes become hackable in the same way as the embedded devices controlling them. Ignoring the reality of vulnerabilities will not restrict them to the realm of fiction. The threats are real. Many have already occurred. Only by recognizing the new challenges that our connected world poses and coming together to address them will we be able to make our leap into this new way of life secure and safe, and get the fullest benefits from it.
AI's effect on the workplace will not be limited merely to repetitive, production line-type jobs. Increasingly, it also enters the realm of highly trained knowledge workers. It will also affect those who manage workers currently employed in such jobs. AI likely will reshape jobs all the way up to the C-level offices. That doesn't mean, though, that managers and executives will no longer be needed. They simply need to prepare themselves for shifts in their work responsibilities.
Where AI, robots, IoT and the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution are taking us, and how we should prepare for it are some of the hottest topics being discussed today. Perhaps the most striking thing about these discussions is how different people’s conclusions are.
Personal privacy is something that once lost, may be difficult to pull back. If we have innocently signed away our data privacy rights because of trust in the status quo, there are no guarantees that our personal data will not be used against ourselves or our family members. The smart city train has already left the station. In a world where the population is increasing and resources are finite, we need to find smarter ways of living together. Smart technologies hold the key to making this happen but we need to proceed with caution and build a layer of respectful trust and privacy in our smart places.
The phrase 'smart city' conjures up a vision of a Metropolis like urban jungle. A jungle that is made up of intelligent structures, buildings that know when we enter and leave, traffic that flows easily, and always available parking spaces. A place where the city knows what we want, before we want it, and gets it right every time. This utopian vision of a future is actually fast becoming a reality… But as this brave new world opens up opportunities for business, it also reveals vulnerabilities for the individuals within the smart city too, including their own personal privacy. The smart city is built not only on traditional bricks and mortar but on data too. These data are integral to both the intelligence behind the smart city and our own place in an increasingly digital world. Privacy is one of those things that once lost, is difficult to regain. Are our smart cities leaders taking care, not just to provide efficient, clean living, but to take care of our privacy too?
"We're building a robot the size of the world, and most people don't even realize it." This is how Bruce Schneier described the Internet of Things in a nutshell… The "things" in our Internet of Things are frighteningly exposed… So, why isn't there more discussion about IoT hacks outside of the cybersecurity community? While the headlines are dominated by news of cyberattacks on retailers, there’s been surprisingly little buzz about this huge threat to what’s increasingly becoming the Internet of Everything… Why doesn't a government somewhere evaluate these frameworks, consult with experts, and draft regulations? If there's one thing everyone agrees on, it's the need for some sort of global standard to adopt. Ideally, industry leaders will come together to create the framework our growing internet of things desperately needs. The successful development and adoption of this network depends on it.
Telecom operators sat back as the new over-the-top (OTT) service providers, internet and tech companies slowly ate away at their business, particularly in the B2C space. A combination of institutional laziness and poor execution on promising initiatives gave these new entrants the time to jump in and snatch away customers…Telecom operators have an opportunity to rethink their business model, transform their organization, and execute on competitive ideas. This is especially true in the B2B space where telecom operators can use their existing infrastructure to offer premium network solutions for large enterprises, particularly when it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT)…Telecom operators are close enough to take a bite out of the IoT market. What they’re missing are the teeth and the determination. While the legacy tools and procedures exist to allow telecom operators to be the leading providers of IoT services and security solutions, it will take an organizational shift to make such a strategy successful. By doing this, telecom operators will not only make money, they’ll secure their future in the presence of ambitious OTT competitors.
In the 60s cartoon The Jetsons, the family lived in a futuristic city with flying cars, a robotic housekeeper, and even a watch that let you do video calling. The Jetsons city of the future is with us in the here and now as we have the technology to build smart cities, and in doing so, we can create amazing places to live and work. This idea of making our cities smart is engaging clever minds all over the world and we are witnessing the emergence of smart places across the globe. All of the visions of smart city projects have one thing in common. They are based upon the creation of, analysis of, and processing of, large amounts of data — aka integrated data exchanges, all predicated on hyper-connectivity achieved often through Internet-enabled devices. These data are the sights and sounds of the processes we use to live and work in municipalities…
(This is the draft second chapter of my upcoming book Cyber-Kinetic Attacks) The fact that cyber-kinetic attacks rarely appear on mainstream news doesn’t mean they don’t happen. They happen more frequently than you would think. Many, for various reasons, aren’t even reported to agencies charged with combatting them. This hinders security experts in understanding the full scope and recognizing the trends in this growing problem. We’ll highlight examples of cyber-kinetic incidents and attacks in this chapter. Some were malfunctions that, nonetheless, demonstrated cyber-physical system vulnerabilities. Some were collateral damage from hacking or computer viruses. The vulnerabilities these exposed inspired a growing number of targeted cyber-kinetic attacks in recent years. If nothing else, the attacks described in this chapter demonstrate that the threat of cyberattacks on critical systems are not hypothetical. They occur increasingly...