The technology landscape is rapidly changing how we interact and live in our world. The variety of Internet of Things is huge and growing at a phenomenal pace. Every kind of device imaginable is becoming ‘smart’ and connected. Entertainment gadgets, industrial sensors, medical devices, household appliances, and personal assistants are being connected and empowered to relieve burdens of our daily living. The number of phones, tablets, and PC’s is fueling the growth of cloud based service environments.
Emerging innovations around semi-autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, merged reality, and machine learning is creating vast amounts of data. Next-generation critical infrastructures and communications are enabling greater capacities for connectivity and services. All of these and other elements are ushering in a new era of both connectivity as well as extending the reach of technology to control aspects of our physical world. With such great power, we will become more reliant on the devices and services which make our lives easier, efficient, and more productive. As a consequence, the need for security, safety, and privacy will become immensely important.
Orion Hindawi recently penned an article in WIRED “Cybersecurity is an existential threat. Here is what we need to do”. In the article, Orion postulates the real emerging threat will not be around social engineering, the increase of ransomware, or nation-state cyberattacks. Rather he states:
“The hardest challenge for cybersecurity in 2017… will be scalability”
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I met Orion and his father many years ago, back when they had started BigFix. Both impressed me as very smart people and possessed a keen understanding of the challenges security products faced in large enterprise environments. At the time, big organizations were having great difficulty in understanding what was on their network, how to keep it patched, and what to do when devices no longer conformed to standards. Security products did not have the breadth to understand all the moving parts and even worse did not function well when tasked to support so many endpoints and connections.
The Ante Goes Up
Well the world is about to experience those problems once again, at a global scale. Orion’s article in Wired takes those challenges and the expertise behind solving some of those problems for business, to the next logical step.
The number of users, device, and usages are ramping up. This, combined with devices beginning to extend beyond data and into ‘control’ of the physical world will bring life-safety concerns to light. The technology and security industry will have a choice: adaptation or crisis. As incidents become apparent, the expectations of people will help drive change in regulations, product purchase criteria, vendor selection, and standards. A real risk remains. If the risks of threats aren’t put in check soon enough, a severe backlash could occur.
Security must rise as we further embrace and empower technology to have insights and control over aspects of our everyday routines. Will security be able to scale? Well, for the benefit of us all, it better adapt quickly. There is far too much is at stake.
Interested in more? Follow me on Twitter (@Matt_Rosenquist), Steemit, and LinkedIn to hear insights and what is going on in cybersecurity.